Suva: Fijian Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama has said his government Covid-19 vaccination campaign starting next week, adding that all civil servants and private workers should be vaccinated “as a condition of their service”.
Vaccines are the best possible protection, “for us, for those around us; those in our homes; those who ride with us in the bus; those who share our workplaces. Remember, it’s not just about protecting ourselves – being vaccinated is a responsibility we all owe to each other, “Bainimarama said in a speech to the country on Thursday.
“That is why the government is asking that all employers and employees in Fiji, including civil servants, be vaccinated as a condition of their employment,” he said.
According to government guidelines, government officials who did not receive their first dose of the vaccine must go on leave from July 12, the Xinhua news agency reported.
They can only return to work before they have received at least the first dose of the vaccine before 15 August and are fully vaccinated by 1 November.
Anyone who does not follow the guidelines will be fired from the job.
Under the Health and Safety at Work Act, all employers and employees in the private sector and statutory bodies must also be vaccinated, otherwise they lose their jobs.
“No jabs, no jobs, that’s what science tells us is safest, and that is now the government policy enforced by law,” Bainimarama said.
He said the AstraZeneca vaccine administered in Fiji offers 92 percent protection against hospitalization against the Delta variant.
With other potentially deadly variants spreading around the world, including the highly contagious Lambda variant in Australia, Fiji cannot afford to waste time as vaccination is the only way forward, he said.
With enough vaccines provided by Australia, India and New Zealand, Fiji has administered a steady average of 40,000 doses of vaccines each week, and so far 335,000 Fijians have been vaccinated, the prime minister said.
Fiji’s target population for vaccination is 586,651 adults.
By November 1 this year, the government expects at least 80 percent of the group to be fully vaccinated.
Fiji has so far confirmed 7,940 Covid-19 cases and 42 deaths.
Source: Telangana Today