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Sheikh Hasina turns Bangladesh into a role model in COVID vaccination

Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina, COVID, COVAX, Sinopharm, AstraZeneca, Serum Institute, Vaccine

Opinion

Sheikh Hasina turns Bangladesh into a role model in COVID vaccination

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Due to magnanimous statesmanship of Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and praiseworthy initiatives of her government the country has already emerged into a role model to the world in COVID vaccination. While the World Health Organization set a target to vaccinate 70 percent of the total population of every country by middle of 2022, Bangladesh, until April 6, 2022 has already succeeded in administering one dose of the COVID vaccine to 75.25 percent of the population, two doses to 67.37 percent and third booster dose to 9,10 percent. To most of the nations in the world, including those upper middle-income countries, Bangladesh’s success in administering COVID jabs is already seen with great surprise and even envy.

Bangladesh began vaccinating people in January 2021 with AstraZeneca doses purchased from Serum Institute, India. While Serum committed to supply 60.8 million doses from COVAX, a WHO-backed program to provide shots to developing nations by 2021, it failed to keep commitment after supplying less than a third of the 30 million doses. Serum Institute postponed supplied in April 2021 following an export ban slapped by the Indian authorities in the wake of a devastating wave of coronavirus cases in that country. At this crucial junction Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina instructed to search alternative sources of vaccine. Accordingly, Ministry of Foreign Affairs courted nations through diplomatic channels for shots, particularly of the AstraZeneca vaccine, and also decided to buy 70.70 million doses of COVID vaccines from Chinese vaccine manufacturer Sinopharm. As the Chinese manufacturer kept commitment and started sending vaccines to Bangladesh, people started getting COVID vaccines very conveniently while health workers in various vaccination centers in the country have also been playing enthusiastic role in ensuring people are vaccinated at fastest pace.

In addition to supply of Chinese Sinopharm vaccines, Bangladesh received 90.62 million shots in donation from COVAX, 80.71 million in cost-sharing agreement with COVAX and 20.1 million as gifts from countries with surplus.

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When COVID broke-out in 2019, a number of anti-Bangladesh elements, including propagandists of Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) and Jamaat-e-Islami started spreading rumor claiming at least 17 million people will die due to this pandemic. An anti-Bangladesh propagandist named David Bergman along with his cohorts named Tasneem Khalil (who runs a news portal named Netra News under funding from the United States Congress), Kanak Sarwar and few other agents of BNP and Jamaat began orchestrated propaganda with the nefarious agenda of spreading fear amongst the people. They even said, government of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina won’t succeed in getting enough volume of vaccines for the people of Bangladesh.

Finally, every evil attempts of these conspirators got bogged-down as the government not only succeeded in arranging vaccines for the people, at the direct instructions of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Bangladesh government has been very successfully tackling the crisis thus saving Bangladesh’s economy and export trade from difficulty.

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Tajul Islam is a Special Correspondent of Blitz.

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