President Lazarus Chakwera has maintained that Malawi will not use expired Covid-19 vaccines on the population, saying Malawi is not a dumping ground.
The Malawi leader made the remarks in an interview with CNN on Thursday.
Malawi last month said it will destroy 16,000 doses of expired AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine despite the World Health Organization (WHO) advising against the move.
The WHO said the expired vaccines are still safe to use 36 months after manufacture and advised African countries to keep hold of them and wait for further guidance.
But Chakwera said during the interview that the government understands that the efficacy might still be there but the government has to be careful so that Malawians should not feel shortchanged.
“People should not be thinking that we are a dumping ground,” said Chakwera.
Asked if he does not trust the WHO, Chakwera said the WHO has been saying a lot of things that have not been accepted everywhere uniformly.
He added his government is not forcing anyone to take the vaccine but it is encouraging people to get the jab.
Malawi launched the its vaccination programme in March and Chakwera was the first person to get vaccinated. The country has so far vaccinated over 300,000 people.