ZVISHAVANE: HEALTH authorities in the Midlands province have said they will engage religious leaders, particularly from the normally conservative Apostolic sects for them to accept the Covid-19 vaccine upon roll-out.
The government has announced it will start the national roll-out programme next week.
However, the Zvishavane district health promotion officer, Mubatsiri Shoko said followers of Apostolic sects usually do not participate in national vaccination programmes because of their religious beliefs, hence the need to employ strategies for them to accept the coronavirus vaccine.
“There is a big challenge. Already they do not partake in other vaccination programmes. For instance, some don’t even believe in immunisation hence the need to employ techniques so that they accept and are inoculated against the Covid-19 virus.”
Shoko added: “There is need to advocate and persuade them to accept the vaccine once it is rolled out.”
His sentiments come when there are reports the majority of Apostolic sect leaders in the Zvishavane district have indicated they would not get inoculated since it was against their religious beliefs.
An Apostolic sect leader from the district who only identified himself as Madzibaba Paul said his church did not believe in people getting injected with modern medicines.
“It is against our beliefs and l don’t see how this will change with the coming of the Covid-19 vaccine,” he said.