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Zambia’s untold role in COVID fight

VICTOR KALALANDA, Lusaka
A GREAT deal has been written about the Russian and British COVID-19 vaccines, but, in a sense, absolutely nothing—nada, zilch and zero—about the Zambian one.
In the global ongoing struggle for the most efficacious COVID-19 vaccine, which is a nuclear arms race in its own right, one has read or heard about the controversial Sputnik V of Russia or the UK-made AstraZeneca, but not a related thing about Zambia.
And, one may ask, does it really matter?
Well, it does because in a truly global effort and at such a decisive moment in human history, every nation under the sun must be accountable for its existence, not just by adhering to health guidelines, but by contributing its resources or talents towards realising the common good and helping save man from apocalyptic disaster.
That ought to be the source of real national pride. To fall short of that expectation, it can be argued, is to be selfish or irresponsible!
The media blunder, in which only Russia and the UK seem to enjoy the lion’s share of media publicity on COVID-19 science is just that, a blunder, because Zambia has also put its best foot forward through its genius, Joseph Nkolola, who is a senior scientist at the Harvard Medical School and plays an instrumental role in developing a COVID-19 vaccine which uses adenovirus serotype 26 (Ad26).
Dr Nkolola puts his scientific skills at the service of one of the world’s most respected and prestigious laboratories at the Centre for Virology and Vaccine Research, the Barouch Laboratory, named for its renowned leader, Prof Dan Barouch, in Boston, United States of America.
Affiliated to Harvard University and now in collaboration with pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson, this laboratory hosts Dr Nkolola as he is involved in the intensive and yet controversial scientific effort to find the most useful vaccine to counter the virus that has brought public life to its knees.
Since the outbreak of COVID-19, and with great urgency, the Zambian scientist has together with his highly skilled and CLICK TO READ MORE




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