Taskforce Co-Chairperson Dr. John Phuka made the call on Friday, 5th February, 2021 in Blantyre during meetings the taskforce held with council representatives, religious and traditional leaders.
“We may be receiving the first tranche of vaccine doses by the end of this month. Malawi, through COVAX, is expecting 3.8 million bundles, which means we can vaccinate 20 per cent of the population, which is 3.8 million people.
“We, therefore, need to sensitise communities and the general public. We are also calling upon religious and traditional leaders to assist us cascade the right information. There is a lot of misinformation and disinformation surrounding the Covid-19 vaccine. People are deliberately creating unnecessary anxieties and we want our leaders to disseminate trusted information,” said Phuka.
In her remarks, Senior Chief Chikumbu of Mulanje described the meeting as fruitful.
“We are getting first-hand information about issues surrounding Covid-19. As traditional leaders, we are getting mixed reactions from our subjects bordering on misinformation from social media users. We are going to sensitise our subjects on the importance of taking the vaccine seriously,” said Chikumbu.
The meetings, which have been held in Lilongwe, Mzuzu and Blantyre, discussed Covid-19 response interventions and newly gazetted regulations.