African Union member states have passed a resolution requiring that all Covid-19 vaccines assistance and those being procured by individual countries be sourced from within the continent.
Africa CDC Acting Director Dr. Ahmed Ogwell says the move is aimed at creating demand for vaccines being produced locally as well as ensuring that the continent has a sustainable production of vaccines as part of early preparedness.
Kenya is among countries on the continent that are set to produce Covid-19 vaccines together with South Africa, Senegal and Rwanda.
Dr. Ogwell who took over from Dr. John Nkengasong in an acting capacity has warned that Covid-19 infections have begun rising again with some countries also recording an increase in fatalities.
Dr. Ogwell said the Africa CDC has begun studies to ascertain the cause of the current rise in the number of Covid-19 cases, which he said could be caused by a new variant or a sub-lineage of an existing variant.
South Sudan and Somalia have already recorded a 5 per cent rise in deaths due to Covid-19.
He called on member states to increase surveillance, testing and sequencing as part of measures aimed at containing the pandemic.