The majority in Parliament denies a Norwegian newspaper report that Ghana is buying Sputnik vaccines from Russia at US$19 per dose instead of US$10
Dr Nana Ayew Afriyie, the chairman of Parliament’s Select Committee on Health has dismissed claims that government is procuring Sputnik V vaccines from Russia at almost double the original price.
A Norwegian newspaper, VG, reported that Ghana is buying Sputnik V vaccines from Russia which originally cost US$10 per dose at US$19.
The minority in Parliament had earlier also requested for a bi-partisan probe into the allegations. VG reported that Ghana’s Minister of Health, Kwaku Agyemang-Manu, signed the contract with an Emirati official who was involved in the sale of gas turbines to Ghana in the controversial Ameri deal and another wanted Norwegian citizen.
However, reacting to the report, Dr Afriyie said government has opened up its doors to middle men and agents to procure and deliver vaccines which is in line with the Russian government’s arrangements.
“Unlike the AstraZeneca which is more of a government to government system, the Russians use more of middlemen or third parties to be able to do transactions. So what the governments do is to give you letters of authorisation and then you go ahead to strike a deal with them.
“So as far as it’s, about seven companies have letters and various prices ranging between US$12 and US$19. So if the impression is created as if it’s only one company and it’s created as if it’s US$19, the other question is what happens to the other people who quoted US$12 or lower than US$19. And who for some reasons, all of them have not been able to deliver,” Dr Afriyie told the media.
Listen to excerpt of his presser in the attached audio file:Audio Player00:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.
Ghana expecting 300, 000 doses of Sputnik V vaccines
Meanwhile, the President Akufo-Addo says the government is expecting an additional 300, 000 doses of Sputnik V vaccines to arrive in the country.
Delivering his 25th address to the nation on measures the government is taking to curb the COVID-19 pandemic, he said, “We are expecting an additional 300,000 doses of Sputnik V vaccines, which have already been approved by the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA), to arrive in the country.
“As and when we make further progress in the acquisition of vaccines, the Ministries of Health and Information will make this known to you. We are making all efforts to achieve our overall vaccination target.”
Ghana has already taken delivery of 350,000 more AstraZeneca vaccines from the Democratic Republic of Congo through the COVAX initiative.
The vaccines form part of 1.3 million doses out of the 1.7 million doses being redistributed by the United Nations children’s agency UNICEF to Ghana, Comoros, Senegal and Angola.