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sandf thumb medium90 89News24 reports that the China's People's Liberation Army (PLA), which over the past year has made vaccine donations to foreign militaries in 28 countries, has offered 300,000 free doses of the CoronaVac inoculation, manufactured by Sinovac, to the SA National Defence Force (SANDF).

Minutes of meetings seen by amaBhungane show that in November the SA Military Health Service's (SAMHS) command council agreed to audit how many members of the army still had to be vaccinated to determine how many CoronaVac jabs would be required. The minutes state the vaccine would be imported through the national Department of Health (DOH) which "will not use it, so the ordered amount must be utilised by the defence". The DOH and Numolux Group, Sinovac's official local partner responsible for distributing CoronaVac in SA, both acknowledged the Chinese offer. The DOH said it was "waiting for a formal request from the SANDF to import the donation of Sinovac for SANDF members". But the SANDF denies making plans to use Sinovac's vaccine and refuses to acknowledge the existence of an offer to donate the vaccine to the army. Sinovac's CoronaVac was given conditional authorisation for emergency use by the SA Health Products Authority (Sahpra) in July but has yet to be included in SA’s vaccine rollout programme. The preconditions include the submission of final results of Sinovac's ongoing clinical studies and periodic safety updates.

  • Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Tebogo Tshwane at News24


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