Govt all set to launch mega vaccination campaign to fight new variant

Asad Umar urges people to get vaccinated against extremely dangerous variant

ISLAMABAD: Minister for Planning and Development Asad Umar Monday said the government was all set to launch a mega vaccination campaign in next three days to help people fight the variant and urged citizens to get vaccinated against the virus.

Asad, also the head of National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC), while addressing a press conference along with SAPM Faisal Sultan, said that the new variant of coronavirus, Omicron, is extremely dangerous and next two to three weeks are extremely important in this regard.

He said the new variant is spreading around the world but vaccination provides the only protection against the virus.

Asad further said that the government is taking steps to control the spread of the new coronavirus variant in the country.

On the occasion, Faisal Sultan said that Omicron variant is spreading faster as compared to other variants. Unvaccinated people are being affected by the virus all around the globe, he added.

The PM’s aide further said that millions of people have been vaccinated and but still millions are yet to get their jabs.

On the other hand, Omicron, heavily mutated Covid-19 variant, spread across the globe on Sunday, shutting borders and renewing curbs.

The variant, first discovered in southern Africa, represents a fresh challenge to global efforts to battle the pandemic. Several countries have already re-imposed measures.

“We know we are now in a race against time,” said European Commission Chief Ursula Von der Leyen. Vaccine manufacturers need two to three weeks “to get a full picture of the quality of the mutations”, she added.

A long list of countries have already imposed travel restrictions on southern Africa, including Pakistan, Qatar, the United States, Britain, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the Netherlands.

Angola became the first southern African country to suspend all flights from its regional neighbours Mozambique, Namibia and South Africa.

South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa on Sunday called on countries to lift the travel bans “before any further damage is done to our economies”.

The head of the World Health Organization in Africa also urged countries to follow the science rather than impose flight bans in a bid to contain the new Covid strain.

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