Traditional leaders hailed in fight against Covid19 and cholera

Traditional leaders have been applauded for playing a crucial role in the fight against cholera and Covid19.

This is coming at a time when the country has been struggling with misconceptions regarding the Covid19 and cholera vaccines.

Speaking to MIJ Online Blantyre district chief preventive officer, Penjani Chunda said the new approach of integrating the two campaigns has made it easier for more people to access vaccines.

He says the involvement of chiefs has also helped in changing the narrative people hold about vaccines.

“Traditional leaders are well respected in the communities which makes it easier for people to obey them. Having them in this integration campaign of covid and cholera has gone a long way in having a lot of people getting the jab for both covid and cholera,” he said.

Dr Chinkonde: We are making progress.

Traditional authority Chikumbu of Mulanje district said they are committed in ensuring that the battle is won and that the communities are safe again

“Looking at the misconceptions that were there regarding the vaccines I made sure I took the jab in the presence of my subjects so that they have a vivid example that the vaccine is there to save us and not like others were spreading rumors and am happy that more people in my area followed suit,” said Chikumbu.

UNICEF is among the key partners that have been very instrumental in this cordial working relationship between the traditional leaders and the health workers in promoting positive communication and behavioral change amongst communities.

Speaking to MIJ Online Dr Jacqueline Chinkonde Unicef health specialist emphasized the role that the chiefs have in dealing away with the misconceptions in the communities.

“Since the time we started using the chiefs as advocates for positive communication and behavioral change, the misconceptions in the communities have died down,” she said.


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