Toshao of Manawarin commits to leading Covid vaccination drive

Toshao of Manawarin, Mr. Samuel Miguel has committed to advocate for COVID-19 vaccination in his village, following an outreach by the Ministry of Health.

Director General of the Ministry, Dr. Vishwa Mahadeo and a team is hosting a specialist outreach in the village, which is located in the Moruca sub-region, Barima-Waini (Region One).

Toshao of Manawarin, Samuel Miguel.

During the outreach, the team sought to debunk myths, and address residents’ concerns about the COVID-19 vaccines, in an effort to foster more immunisations.

Dr. Mahadeo cautioned the council members against believing misinformation about the vaccines being peddled on the internet, assuring them that all the vaccines have been properly tested, evaluated and approved for use.

“I took the AstraZeneca vaccine, the Minister of Health took Sputnik, the President and Vice-President took AstraZeneca and Dr. Ramsammy, Former Health Minister, took Sputnik. This Covid is serious business,” he said.

The Director General noted that the only way to fight the disease is by educating oneself and sharing the knowledge with others. He also urged the villagers to continue to practice the basic safety measures: masking, handwashing and/or sanitising and practising social distancing to safeguard their health.

“So, it is our duty to fight this disease, our duty to fight the work of the devil, our duty to ensure that we are safe and our duty to ensure that our families are safe. As leaders of the village, it is your duty to ensure that your village, those who look up to you, those who elected you, that they are safe. And the safest thing that is there, is the vaccine,” he said.

Dr. Mahadeo also assured residents that the Government has purchased enough vaccines for the entire adult population.

Meanwhile, Toshao Miguel relayed that at first, he was fearful to take the vaccine, but he prayed about the matter and then he took the jab.  “Prayers and the vaccines work hand in hand, together,” he said.

Mr. Dario Williams takes his second dose of the Covid vaccine.

He added that after the first dose of the vaccine, he experienced a bit of drowsiness for two days, but felt much better by the third day. The Toshao issued a challenge to the adults of the strong Christian community to do what he did: pray about the matter and then make the important decision to protect themselves and families from COVID-19.

“They are my people, we work together and we talk about it, but there is nothing to fear about this vaccine. I believe in God and I believe He is here and He is going to do things for you, the people in this village. I was afraid of the vaccine, very afraid, but I prayed and I took the vaccine and now I feel strong and well,” Toshao Miguel said.   

Additionally, resident and Council Member, Mr. Bertie Benjamin was happy to report that he has been fully vaccinated against COVID-19. “I took the first vaccine, both shots of the first one, Sinopharm.  I completed both doses, as an indigenous leader and up to this point and time I still feel fine and healthy.”  

Nineteen-year-old, Mr. Dario Williams, who took his second dose of the Sputnik V vaccine on Wednesday during the vaccination drive said he decided to take the vaccine to protect himself and his elderly parents.

Mr. Williams said his parents are due for their second doses soon. Once they have taken their vaccines, he said, his family will be among the first to be completely immunised against the disease. He is urging other villagers to get inoculated against Covid.

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COVID-19 Alert!

Coronavirus disease spreads primarily through contact with an infected person when they cough or sneeze. It also spreads when a person touches a surface or object that has the virus on it, then touches their eyes, nose, or mouth. We urge citizens to practice good hygiene and social or physical distancing also adhere to the guidelines provided by the Ministry of Health, Guyana.