Dr Alfred Driwale, Asst Commissioner, Vaccines and Immunisation – MoH, Hon. Kabuye Kyofatogabye & Daniel Okello, KCCA Director of Public Health
Uganda Breweries Limited in partnership with Coca Cola Uganda have partnered with Kampala City Council Authority (KCCA), NICE-UG and the Ministry of Health to host the first ever mass COVID-19 vaccination event. The event will be held at Kololo Airstrip on Saturday, 16th October, 2021 from 9AM to 5PM.
“Our priority is to increase accessibility to COVID-19 vaccines making it as convenient as possible for people to get vaccinated. We have witnessed an overwhelming response from the public since we extended vaccination to hospitality venues. This event will be on a Saturday and will enable those who need to receive their 1st or 2nd shot to get it with ease, hassle free in a fun environment. All COVID-19 SOP’s will be strictly observed,” said Jackie Tahakanizibwa, the Corporate Relations Manager – Public Policy & Regulatory affairs at Uganda Breweries Limited.
The event will provide over 20 mobile vaccination stations in one location with provisions for convenient access and amenities such as a holding area, recovery tent, hospitality and entertainment.
Since last month, UBL and Coca Cola have supported the scaling up of COVID-19 vaccines extending mobile vaccination sites to restaurants, bars, markets and public centers within the greater Kampala Metropolitan area. The drive has also focused on public sensitization to drive awareness of the benefits of vaccination as a measure against the prevailing pandemic.
Dorothy Kisaka, the KCCA Executive Director applauded UBL for the move and encouraged even more private sector players to come on board to increase uptake of vaccines. “Our target is to vaccinate as many people in Kampala as possible, effectively disseminating the available stock of vaccines to the population. This model has been tried globally and been proven to work. More than 20 vaccination centres will be established within the venue and our Public Health team will deploy sufficient resources to ensure we are able to vaccinate as many people as possible during the day in a smooth and convenient manner.”
Popular artists Azawi and Ykee Benda were also unveiled as ambassadors of the campaign whose role will be to advocate and drive awareness of the benefits of vaccination and encourage as many people to get vaccinated.
According to statistics from the Ministry of Health, total doses of COVID-19 vaccines administered stand at 2.28 million. The government has set a target of 4.8 million people vaccinated to facilitate the safe and full reopening of the economy.
“Vaccination is a proven lifesaving public health intervention. We continue to encourage the public to get fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Vaccines protect you from getting seriously ill and dying from COVID-19. In addition to vaccination, we appeal to the public to continue to adhere to the SOP’s in place,” Ms Kitaka added.
“This initiative compliments our Raising the Bar program, a USD 1 million fund established to prepare the hospitality industry for safe reopening by establishing health measures and providing essential training to boost their capacity to reopen their businesses under the respective national guidelines. Economic recovery remains hinged on vaccination that will enable easing of restrictions that are currently impacting business recovery,” UBL’s Jackie Tahakanizibwa added.
Uganda’s economy contracted 1.1% in 2020 because of the pandemic and the related containment measures. According to Bank of Uganda, Uganda’s economy is projected to grow between 3% – 3.5% this financial year however the near-term outlook remains worrying as vaccinations are lagging well behind set targets.