US President Joe Biden told Kenyan counterpart Uhuru Kenyatta at a meeting at the White House today that Washington would donate more than 17 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine to the new coronavirus in the African Union.
“We hope that this donation will help the SA countries to organize immunization programs,” the White House said in a statement.
This was Biden’s first meeting with an African leader since taking office. Kenya holds the rotating presidency of the United Nations Security Council this month. The United States and Kenya have been working together for many years on economic and security issues, including the fight against terrorism.
The African Union, which has 55 member states with a total population of more than 1.3 billion people, accuses vaccine manufacturers of not distributing vaccines fairly. Of the 5.7 billion vaccine doses of Covid-19 given by mid-September worldwide, only 2% went to Africa.
The US has already donated 50 million doses of vaccine to the AU. The 17 million doses of J&J vaccine are immediately available and will be shipped to the SA in the coming weeks, the White House said.