The continent continues to lag behind other regions in vaccination statistics, having struggled to obtain the vital doses since the first vaccines were administered in December 2020.
“While 44 percent of the world’s population is fully vaccinated, in Africa this is still only 8 percent,” said Ghebreyesus.
He outlined that some countries were facing challenges rolling out vaccines and scaling up rapidly, but noted that WHO was working closely with those countries to overcome bottlenecks.
Tedros also took the opportunity to urge African countries to support the formulation of an international treaty on pandemic prevention, preparedness, and response.
“The increased participation of Africa in multilateral discussions regionally and globally is essential for shaping global health security, and African health security,” he said.
“The persistent inequity in access to vaccines, and the emergence of the Omicron variant, also shows why investing in local production must be a priority.”