Vaccination: Morocco wins “at the casino”, Algeria on the mat!

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The suspense lasted a few weeks, but finally Morocco got there.

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The Kingdom has received its first batch of Covishield, the vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford. A second shipment of the Chinese vaccine, developed by Sinopharm, is also expected to arrive on Wednesday, January 27. And the long-awaited vaccination campaign should start immediately.

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For this operation of an unprecedented scale, all the logistics are ready. From November 9, King Mohammed VI gave his instructions to launch preparations for this campaign which will benefit free of charge all Moroccans wishing to be vaccinated.

As in all the phases that marked this never-lived health crisis, the sovereign demonstrated that the preservation of the lives of Moroccans is a national priority. As early as August, he took personal contact with the high Chinese authorities to involve the Kingdom in the clinical trials of the Sinopharm vaccine, in which 600 Moroccan volunteers took part. He also gave his instructions so that the health authorities place firm orders for the acquisition of vaccines, made in particular from AstraZeneca.

It is this foresight and this anticipatory approach of a head of state concerned about the health of its citizens that is now worth Morocco to get out of it cheaply in this global race to acquire the vaccine. Moroccans can be proud to soon be among the first Africans to be vaccinated. Because the Kingdom has doubled major continental powers like South Africa, Nigeria and Egypt (which received only a symbolic donation from the United Arab Emirates), or other countries that believe still in their influence, like Algeria.

In this neighboring country, chibanis in power have always envied the dynamism and pragmatism of the neighbor to the west. Incapable of offering the same mode of governance to their citizens, with the efficiency that goes with it, they find nothing better than to seek to discredit it with fake news.

Last November, while the Kingdom was running the device of this vaccination campaign which is starting shortly, the Algerian health authorities were content to denigrate the Moroccan approach. “In Morocco, they bet at the casino,” said Kamel Senhadji, director general of the Algerian National Health Security Agency. He then wanted to make it clear that “Algeria has a more cautious approach which is comparable to what is done in the rest of the countries of the world, in particular among Europeans. We are all waiting for the results of the vaccines, ”he argued.

In reality, this official like so many other high-ranking clerks badly placed in Algiers no longer knew which way to turn. Internally, he must have been annoyed by the immobility of the real decision-makers of the Ministry of Defense and of the El Mouradia palace, where a draft was blowing due to a new phase of vacancy in power.

Remember at the time, President Abdelmadjid Tebboune was then entering his second month of hospitalization in Germany, where he had been transferred urgently. It was only after waking up from anesthesia at the end of December that the septuagenarian president began to fidget in all directions to launch a vaccination strategy. It was a little too late: in vain these ministers begged for a batch of vaccines, the games were already over. Even for Sputnik V, Moscow’s big brother told them that they would still have to wait. And the waiting list is long …

Not even having vaccines yet, the Algerian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sabri Boukadoum, a great boast, told his Tunisian counterpart, Othmane Jerandi, that Algeria was going to share its anti-Covid vaccines with Tunisia.

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The latter, who probably does not yet know the inconsistency of Algerian officials, took him at his word and declared to the press: “

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The Algerian Minister of Foreign Affairs assured me that his country has not yet received said vaccine. However, he assured me that upon receipt of the first lots, they will be shared with Tunisia ”. Since then, it is embarrassment and cacophony in Algeria.

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The government spokesperson explained that only the “surplus” in vaccines will be shared with “the Tunisian brothers”. And it is a safe bet that Tunisia will receive its first batches of vaccines before Algeria.

This vaccination episode is a new illustration of the great Algerian bluff. A country where nothing is really going well: even the sardine has seen growing wings in the markets where its price now exceeds 8 euros per kilogram. As for red meat, it has just been the subject of an import ban, to leave the little currency that remains for the purchase of weapons and the financing of the Polisario. This augurs a shortage of foodstuffs and a worsening of a social climate … already tense, like an Algerian general playing Russian roulette.

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