UNICEF’s Sri Lanka Office says that steps have been taken to bring the stock of AstraZeneca vaccine from Japan to Sri Lanka as soon as possible. Bismarck Swangin, Head of Communications, Advocacy and partnerships, told Lankasara that the plans are underway for the shipment from Tokyo to Sri Lanka of the AstraZeneca doses contributed by the Government of Japan. “ The logistical arrangements are being worked out to ensure that the vaccines can be brought to Sri Lanka as soon as possible,” Swangin said.
According to a reliable source, the shipment of vaccines from Japan to Sri Lanka was delayed due to a young politician request as he wanted to pretend the man behind bringing AstraZeneca to Sri Lanka. This politician has made this request to enhance his image.
In western province of the island nearly 537000 who received AstraZeneca for first dose are waiting for their second vaccine at least for 15 to 16 weeks. Although the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends that the second dose be given within 8 to 12 weeks after the first dose.
Recently, the Director-General of Health Services and the Cabinet Spokesman Dr Ramesh Pathirana pointed out that most of the Covid deaths in Sri Lanka are among the persons who have not to get vaccines and they emphasized the need for an efficient vaccination program.
It is reported that the Japanese government has rejected the request made by a powerful Sri Lankan politician in the face of such a dangerous situation and arrangements are being made to obtain the stock of vaccine from Japan’s AstraZeneca manufacturer Daiichi Sankyo and send it to Sri Lanka immediately. 1.4 million doses of AstraZeneca are expected to arrive in a couple of days.