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$8.8bn vaccine donation to GAVI excites WHO

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has expressed appreciation to governments and donors for contributing $8.8 billion for the vaccine as announced by GAVI, an international organisation, created to improve access to vaccines.

The WHO Regional Office for Africa in Brazzaville, Congo, expressed the appreciation on Friday on its official twitter handle @WHOAFRO.

“This is great news that governments and donors have pledged an amazing $8.8 billion to GAVI for life-saving vaccinations, exceeding the target.

“Thank you to member states, Uganda, Cameroon and Burkina Faso, who pledged to support GAVI’s immunisation efforts,’’ it said.

GAVI had on Thursday on its twitter account announced the donation, saying: “We are thrilled to announce that our goal has been achieved and surpassed!

“Thank you to all our incredible donors for reaching a total figure of $8.8 billion.’’

In his reaction, WHO Director-General, Dr Tedros Ghebreyesus, thanked the donors.

“I’d like to thank all donors who stepped up yesterday to fully fund GAVI for its next five-year cycle.

“This is a vital investment in saving millions of lives from vaccine-preventable diseases.

“WHO looks forward to working with GAVI to realise the power of vaccines for everyone and everywhere,’’ he said.

Meanwhile, the UN health agency said Ebola vaccination activities were ongoing in Mbandaka, Democratic Republic of Congo, where a new outbreak was detected this week.

“WHO and partners have deployed experts to support the government-led response on the ground and sent supplies for vaccination and testing efforts,’’ it said.

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