French President Emmanuel Macron has donated over 100,000 doses of AstraZeneca vaccines to Rwanda as both countries move to amend ties.
The donation of 117,600 vaccine doses was delivered on Thursday as President Macron arrived in Rwanda on a two-day state visit.
“I want to thank you for coming along with much needed vaccines. I’m sure it took up a lot of space on your plane, you could have brought more people but you decided to bring us vaccines so thank you very much. We needed them very badly...that’s what friends are there for,” President Paul Kagame said during a joint press briefing.
Rwanda needs at least 13 million doses of Covid-19 vaccine to inoculate its target 60 percent of the population, about 7.5 million people, by June 2022. So far, only 4 percent have received the first dose of the vaccine.
Currently, delivery of the second doses of AstraZeneca vaccines to Kigali is experiencing delays after India suspended vaccine exports due to an upsurge in domestic Covid-19 cases.
Rwanda was to receive Covid-19 vaccines in early April from the Serum Institute of India via the Covax Facility. In March, Rwanda vaccinated 350,465 people, with the AstraZeneca and Pfizer vaccines.
Rwanda Biomedical Center announced in April that people who received the first dose of AstraZeneca would have to wait for over two months before receiving the second dose.