NATIONAL Assembly speaker Jacob Mudenda has challenged legislators to lead by example by getting Covid-19 vaccination in their constituencies.
This comes as a total of 770 709 people have inoculated against the deadly respiratory virus with authorities targeting to vaccinate 10 million by year end.
At first there was some resistance from the public from getting their Covid-19 jabs due to conspiracy theories surrounding the vaccines.
However, in recent weeks it seems the national inoculation drive has gathered momentum judging by the winding long queues at vaccination centres.
Mudenda feels that legislators have a crucial role to play in ensuring the national inoculation drive is a success, especially following the recent spike in new infections and deaths.
“The vaccination process is a voluntary exercise, but we also need leaders in voluntary activities. On the balance of probabilities, any common sense would dictate that you need to be vaccinated unless you have other means of preventing the attack by this Covid-19 — so be it, but common sense would dictate that we need to be vaccinated for the sake of our health and those who live with us,” Mudenda said in the august House on Tuesday.
“We had encouraged members of Parliament and staff to be vaccinated in their constituencies where they come from so they provide some leadership in terms of demonstrating to the electorate the need for us all to be vaccinated against the Covid-19 pandemic.
“We will make the necessary arrangements with the ministry of Health to ensure that those members who have not yet been vaccinated are vaccinated.”
It also comes as legislators expressed divergent views over the ever-increasing Covid-19 cases, saying that all MPs should show proof of vaccination before Parliamentary sittings.
“Taking into cognisance what President Emmerson Mnangagwa said that we need to be vaccinated, I am calling upon you honourable Speaker to start at home here in Parliament by ensuring that all MPs and staff who come in through the doors of Parliament have vaccination cards to ensure that we do not transmit Covid-19 here or outside Parliament as we meet with a lot of people,” MDC Mt Pleasant MP Samuel Banda said.