The World Health Organisation (WHO) chief, Tedros Ghebreyesus has dismissed a suggestion by some scientists that the coronavirus vaccine be tested in Africa.
This comes after two French doctors suggested trials of vaccine in Africa, on a Television debate, to see if a tuberculosis vaccine would prove effective against coronavirus.
Jean-Paul Mira, head of intensive care at Cochin hospital in Paris, said: “If I can be provocative, shouldn’t we be doing this study in Africa, where there are no masks, no treatments, no resuscitation?”
Camille Locht then replied: “You are right. We are currently thinking similarly about a study in Africa regarding the BCG vaccine. There is a proposal that has gone out — or will. We will seriously consider it.”
At a press briefing on Monday, Ghebreyesus said Africa is not a testing ground for any vaccine and described such suggestions as a hangover from the “colonial mentality.”
“On the vaccines issue, there was a comment from some couple of scientists who said the testing ground for the new vaccine should be Africa.
To be honest, I was so appalled. When we need solidarity, these kinds of racist remarks will not help.
“Africa cannot and will not be a testing ground for any vaccine. We will follow all the rules to test any vaccine or therapeutics all over the world using exactly the same rule, whether it is in Europe, Africa or wherever, we will use the same protocol,”
Ghebreyesus said in the video from the press briefing which was shared on his official Twitter handle.
“When we needed solidarity these kind of racist remarks will not help. It goes against the solidarity. Africa will not be a testing ground for any vaccine.” – @DrTedros in response to two French doctors suggesting a potential vaccine be trialed in Africa. pic.twitter.com/ECS9F1baPq
— Barry Malone (@malonebarry) April 6, 2020