PRETORIA, March 31. /TASS/. Russia’s COVID-19 vaccine "Sputnik V" has been approved for emergency use in Kenya, Chief Administrative Secretary of the Kenyan Ministry of Health Mercy Mwangangi said on Wednesday.
"The vaccine has received emergency use authorization by the Pharmacy and Poisons Board. We have been able to engage the distributors to identify the facilities that will be able to offer this vaccine," she stated, quoted by The Star newspaper.
Meanwhile, Kenya’s Covid-19 task force chairman Alfred Akwala said that the vaccine had not been approved for commercial use. "You cannot market a product that is not yet approved for commercial use," he stated. Akwala said that a COVID-19 vaccine can receive commercial status in the country if it is approved by the World Health Organization (WHO).
The Russian Embassy in Kenya told TASS that the first batch of Sputnik V had arrived in the country nearly two weeks ago. For its part, the Bloomberg news agency notes that a number of private clinics in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi are administering the Russian vaccine.
On March 26, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta stated that the country is in the conditions of a third wave of COVID-19 pandemic. He noted that the new wave would reach its peak by late April. Currently, Kenya has documented about 133,000 COVID-19 cases, and 2,147 patients have died.