Kagame made the revelation on Monday 21st June 2021 at he attended Qatar Economic Forum.
The President explained that local manufacturing is the optimal way for Africa to have adequate vaccines for its people.
“Simply, Africa has to be equal partner with the rest of the World when it comes to manufacturing vaccines instead of waiting for vaccines from those places where they are manufactured. Right now, Africa is busy trying to do exactly that to find partners. To start manufacturing vaccines on our continent, we have IFC, European Union, other partners that are willing to come and do exactly that with our continent,” he said.
Kagame revealed that Rwanda, South Africa and Senegal have been selected as vaccine manufacturing hubs.
“Once that is up and running, I think we should be able to get vaccines we need on time or at the same time with the rest of the World. There are going to be three hubs on our continent and these countries are advanced on that. These include South Africa, Senegal and Rwanda,” he said.
Kagame underscored that these hubs will manufacture vaccines using mRNA technology adding that Rwanda has reached advanced stage in preparations of vaccine manufacturing plant.
“We will be among these hubs where the manufacturing on the continent is going to happen. For Rwanda in particular, we have partnered with some industries that are specialized in mRNA technology,” he noted.
“This is a new technology that has wide applications in agriculture or other diseases. We have already discussed with people owning that technology. We are discussing with people who will help with the financing and I think in few months we should hear a different story,” added Kagame.
Currently, two COVID-19 vaccines using Messenger RNA (mRNA) technologies have proved safe and highly efficacious. These include one developed by Pfizer and BioNTech and another by Moderna. This type of technology induces cells to produce a protein, or a piece of a protein, that triggers an immune response in the body.
World Health organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus recently revealed that ‘the benefit of this technology, which has been in development for decades, is that it is potentially easier to scale than alternatives and could be faster and easier to adapt for COVID-19 variants of concern’.