Jakarta. The Indonesian government aims to vaccinate over 200 million citizens to get rid of Covid-19, President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo tweeted on Tuesday.
Indonesia has administered around 64 million doses of vaccine in the last six months, with 18.7 million people fully vaccinated to date.
Despite being among top global performers in the total number of doses, Indonesia sees less than 10 percent of its 272 million population fully vaccinated so far.
“In order to achieve population immunity, we need to vaccinate around 208 million citizens, including those aged between 12 and 17 years,” the president wrote.
His tweet appeared hours after the country reached another sad milestone with daily Covid-19 death toll exceeding the 2,000 mark for the first time since the outbreak started.
The National Police and the Indonesian Military (TNI) have been involved to add the pace on vaccination drive with an aim of reaching 2 million doses per day starting next month.
Indonesia has been using mostly vaccine developed by China’s Sinovac Biotech, which also grants license to state-run pharmaceutical company Bio Farma for reproduction at its factory in Bandung, West Java.
Earlier in the day, the government received Sinovac’s half-finished vaccine equivalent to 21 million doses.
It was the 30th delivery of vaccine from various foreign sources, which also include UN-approved global vaccine donor Covax, the United States, Japan and China.
“The government will continue procuring vaccines from many available sources to make sure that we have enough supplies to meet vaccination target,” Coordinating Minister for the Economy Airlangga Hartarto said in a video conference.
He said all the vaccines procured by the government must get authorization for use from the Drug and Food Supervisory Agency (BPOM) and the Indonesian Technical Advisory Group on Immunization. Indonesia took only vaccines approved by the World Health Organization, he added.
“The government is obliged to ensure the safety, quality and efficacy of all types of vaccine we get,” Airlangga said.
Since teenagers were allowed to get the shot early this month, at least 718,000 children have received one dose of the vaccine, he said.
“I need to underline that vaccination is one of government’s strategies to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic. Along with vacination, the public need to be disciplined in obeying health protocols, wearing masks, observing social distancing and maintaining good hygiene,” Airlangga said.
“I hope that cooperation from all parties for the prevention of Covid-19, especially with regard to the vaccination program, can grow stronger so that our nation can control the pandemic, the people can once again be healthy and the economy can recover.”