The Financial Express

Momen appreciates health ministry’s ‘efficiency’ in managing vaccination programme  

| Updated: August 01, 2021 10:28:33

Momen appreciates health ministry’s ‘efficiency’ in managing vaccination programme  

Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen on Saturday appreciated the Health Ministry for its competency and efficiency in managing the vaccination programme nationwide.

He hoped that half of the targeted people would be vaccinated within months if the current trend continues.

Bangladesh wants to vaccinate 80 per cent people of the country in phases.

Dr Momen said the vaccine supply remains steady and there will be no problem getting adequate vaccine doses.

He was talking to reporters at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport after receiving the second consignment of AstraZeneca vaccine doses from Japan together with Health Minister Zahid Maleque.

Senior Secretary of Health Service Division Lokman Hossain Miah and Ambassador of Japan to Bangladesh Ito Naoki were also present.

The second consignment contains 7,81,320 doses of AstraZeneca vaccine.

Dr Momen expressed displeasure as some people are saying it will take five to six years to get all people vaccinated. "Vaccination for 10 million people has been arranged within a week."

Appreciating the Health Ministry for its role, the Foreign Minister said they are doing an excellent job. "We're working together in a coordinated way and we're handling the COVID-19 situation very successfully so far," he said.

Dr Momen thanked the Health Ministry for addressing the issues of expatriates Bangladeshis and students who are willing to return to their studies abroad.

"Challenges are coming and we're facing those challenges, I think, pretty effectively and efficiently," said the Foreign Minister.

He urged all to follow health guidelines properly saying it is a war against Covid-19 and everyone has a responsibility.

"We're thankful to Japan. They've proved that they're real friend of all Bangladeshis," said Momen after receiving the vaccine consignment.

He said Japan, may be in the future, would be providing more and more support to deal with the situation.

Dr Momen said Covid-19 is a big global problem and no country can resolve it alone.

Referring to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, he said vaccine should be a public good and ownership of its technology should be shared by all the countries.

The third consignment of the vaccine that will contain 6,16,780 doses of AstraZeneca is scheduled to arrive in Dhaka on August 3.

Foreign Minister Dr Momen received the first consignment of 2,45,200 doses of AstraZeneca vaccine from Japan on July 24.

Japanese Ambassador to Bangladesh Naoki Ito said this is the manifestation of friendship and partnership.

During his recent telephone conversation with Japanese Foreign Minister Motegi Toshimitsu, Dr Momen raised the vaccine issue and requested him to help Bangladesh with AstraZeneca vaccine supply.

He specifically mentioned the urgency of the AstraZeneca vaccine doses as a good number of people in Bangladesh did not get the second dose of AstraZeneca due to a supply gap.

Japan says it will stand by Bangladesh in the fight against Covid-19.

The Japanese Foreign Minister announced that 15 countries in the region will be provided with 11 million doses in total under the COVAX facility.

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