from ARMANDO DOMINGOS in Maputo, Mozambique
MAPUTO, (CAJ News) – MORE than 1 million people affected by conflict in northern Mozambique have been vaccinated against COVID-19.
This is breakthrough considering the conflict’s impact on the health sector in the provinces of Cabo Delgado, Manica, and Sofala.
The support of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has enabled the vaccination of the people, which represents 75 percent of the total population in affected areas.
They have received two doses.
“The armed conflict in Cabo Delgado has had a real impact on the health system in general,” said Emilio Mashant, ICRC Health coordinator in Mozambique.
Islamists are perpetrating the conflict.
Ashant lamented that most health centres had been destroyed, burned or vandalized and access to these health centers is impossible due to the insecurity.
“The violence prevented the health system from deploying (healthcare workers) to these places to conduct a vaccination campaign against COVID-19,” Mashant said.
ICRC supports Mozambique’s health authorities by providing fuel to transport vaccines and healthcare teams.
It transports the 200 local Red Cross volunteers in the Cabo Delgado province.
Over 3 000 families have fled their homes in search of safety since the beginning of June this year.
The armed conflict in Cabo Delgado has displaced nearly 900 000 Mozambicans in the past few years.
– CAJ News