Living legend Emeritus Archbishop Desmond Tutu received his Covid-19 vaccination today, with the Western Cape Government hoping the staunch vaccine supporter’s participation in their vaccination drive will encourage others to follow suit.
The Western Cape Government confirmed on social media: “Earlier today, Archbishop Emeritus, Desmond Tutu and his wife, Leah Tutu, were vaccinated as part of Phase 2 of the COVID-19 vaccination drive! They’ve helped send a strong message to the rest of the Western Cape and South Africa: the vaccine is safe and effective, and it’s important for every person 60 years and older to register for their vaccine so that we can save lives.”
Western Cape Premier Alan Winde, said it had been a “great honour” to host the Tutus at designated vaccination centre Brooklyn Chest Hospital.
All my life I have tried to do the right thing…
Archbishop Tutu said:
“All my life I have tried to do the right thing and, today, getting vaccinated against Covid-19 is definitely the right thing to do. That’s why Leah and I took this step, to do our part to start the national healing process so we can end this pandemic. We have to do this together!
“Believe me, when you get to our age, little needles worry you far less than bending over does.
“It was wonderful to get out of the house and meet these dedicated healthcare workers who gave us our vaccines. Leah and I signed up to be vaccinated a while ago, because we know this will help save our loved ones from worry and heartbreak, and ourselves from this terrible disease.
“To all of you on the frontlines who have been working to keep us safe for more than a year now, I salute you. God bless all of you for your selfless service to our citizens and our country.”
Piyushi Kotecha, CEO of the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation, said: “We’re relieved that the Arch and Mrs Tutu have now been vaccinated against Covid-19 and support the call for all eligible citizens over the age of 60 who have not yet signed up for the jab to do so urgently.
“Vaccination is the only safe way for countries to break the chain of Covid-19 transmission that has ravaged families, societies and economies across the world. Without it, we cannot get back to normal life again. To achieve mass immunity, we need everyone to get vaccinated. If even one person is left out of access to vaccines, the whole world stays at risk.
“We repeat our call to all South Africans to be vaccinated against Covid-19 as soon as vaccines are available to them. We also call on all our citizens to help one another negotiate the signing-up processes. Please share your access to data and your technological know-how with others in the spirit of ubuntu and service.”
Premier Winde asked those who aren’t yet eligible to get vaccinated to please assist those who are with registering.
“The time has come to fight back against COVID-19, so #LetsDoThis Western Cape,” said the Premier. Health MEC Dr Nomafrench Mbombo and the Head of Health, Dr Keith Cloete, were also present.
Dr Mbombo says: “Today signifies a huge milestone, vaccinating the vulnerable group which utilizes most of our health services. Getting them vaccinated means they are protected from the virus and will not be flocking our health facilities. This in turn will also protect our health system and give us a bit of normalcy.
“We can re-integrate other health services, reduce the burden of illnesses, hospitalizations and deaths from Covid-19, which senior citizens contribute largely. To achieve this, we must make sure that the elderly is vaccinated and safe.”
To register to be vaccinated in the Western Cape, please visit www.westerncape.gov.za and click on the link, or Dial *134*832# and follow the prompts (FREE on all South African Networks), or Whatsapp the word REGISTER to 0600 123456.
If you are over 60 and registered for your COVID-19 vaccine, you can expect:
- An SMS confirming your registration.
- A second SMS with an appointment date and the place.
- Get vaccinated with your first dose.
- Proof of vaccination card.
- An appointment date for your second dose.
As the province moves forward with phase 2, remember to:
- take your ID and present second SMS, or the unique code on the scheduled day.
- Arrive on the scheduled day of your booking. Not on a different day.
- Walk ins are not permitted