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Hwende shows leadership on vaccination… as Chamisa remains mum

By Mutsa Makuvaza

MDC Alliance secretary-general Chalton Hwende says he believes in scientific data which shows that it helps to get vaccinated especially in light of the fact that COVID-19 infections and deaths are on the rise. Hwende shared his vaccination card with his follows on social media platforms, which showed that he got his jabs in May before the onset of the third wave.

“Statistics show that COVID-19 infections and deaths are on the rise,” said Hwende. “To slow down the pandemic Zimbabweans need to make deliberate efforts to get vaccinated. I took the decision to get vaccinated in order to protect myself and those around me. COVID-19 is real. Get vaccinated.”

This, observers say, is in sharp contrast with his party boss Nelson Chamisa who has remained tight-lipped on vaccination, presumably on religious grounds. The MDC Alliance president is a dedicated pastor at a Pentecostal sect. Hwende is the most senior MDC Alliance official who has publicly urged citizens to follow science and get vaccinated.

Hwende’s move comes as last week, world-renowned author, film maker and anti-Zanu PF activist, Tsitsi Dangarembga, got her first Covid-19 vaccination jab at Parirenyatwa Hospital in Harare.

While in the queue to get jabbed, Tsitsi, however, said the vaccination programme was riddled with chaos.

She tweeted from Parirenyatwa: “Finally queuing for my vaccination at Pari. There’s no order. People standing around, staff have just arrived, no one telling us anything. It’s going to be hours waiting. I’ve brought a chair so I can work, but not even enough order for that. Typical Zimbabwean chaos.”

Another anti-Zanu PF activist and Tsitsi’s friend, Hopewell Chin’ono, got his jabs early into the programme in February. The prominent journalist and social media influencer said he had “received the Sinopharm” jab as it was “the only defence available to avoid getting seriously ill” if one contracts the deadly virus.

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A few weeks before, that, Chin’ono had disparagingly described the Chinese vaccines that Zimbabwe is using as “chinhu chavo chekuChina” when he was questioning the legality of possible mandatory vaccination.

Germany publication DW recently rated Zimbabwe’s vaccination programme as properly run and effective as those in Europe, Australia and much of Latin America.

Zimbabwe’s vaccination programme compares favourably with those in European countries. Source: DW

In light of this, Zanu-PF deputy secretary or the youth league, Tendai Chirau has applauded President Mnangagwa for leading a vaccination programme that has been rated as one of the best in the word. Chirau highlighted that the Government would want to see everyone vaccinated regardless of political affiliation, and urged citizens to take heed and get their jabs.

“The vaccination programme by the government does not discriminate on the basis of political affiliation, religion or creed. Let’s all get vaccinated to conquer this endemic. Thank you President Mnangagwa for a robust vaccination drive which is one of the best in Africa,” said Chirau. – Zimbabwe Voice

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