“Covid-19 vaccines are safe and should be taken as soon as possible”. That was the message put across by the Speaker of the Parliament of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Sidie Mohamed Tunis, during the opening of the second 2021 Extraordinary Session of the institution on Monday, 18 October 2021 in Winneba, Ghana.
Mr Tunis gave the assurance that “Parliament continues to examine the COVID-19 pandemic more closely and is very concerned about our region falling deeper into recession, because of the pandemic, which would ultimately erase the progress we have made over the past two decades”.
However, he indicated that “the third wave of the pandemic seems to be stabilizing across our States, but cases are still high”.According to the West African Health Organisation (WAHO), an ECOWAS specialised institution, the West African region recorded 649,077 cases as of 14 October 2021.
He seized the opportunity to thank “the partners of the COVAX initiative and friendly Governments that have donated doses to African Countries”.
Speaker of Parliament, Tunis, also revealed that the percentage of fully vaccinated African populations, which is a little over 2.47% according to the Centre for Disease Control, is appallingly low, compared to those unvaccinated.
“Much as the unavailability of the vaccine is an issue to consider, we also frown at the conspiracy theories that have created fear of the vaccines in our population”, he added.
The Speaker used the opportunity to underscore the need for populations to get vaccinated.