Ghana’s Health Minister Kwaku Agyemang-Manu is demanding scientific evidence from a group of anti-vaccine Ghanaian doctors who have petitioned President Nana Akufo-Addo to halt the COVID-19 vaccination programme since, according to them, the inoculation is rather worsening the spread of the pandemic rather than helping the situation.
Concerned Doctors of Ghana is requesting that all forms of COVID-19 vaccine mandates across the country be rescinded with immediate effect.
The doctors say they disagree with the government’s strategy of banking all hopes on these vaccines and directly or indirectly coercing Ghanaians to go for inoculations against this novel coronavirus disease, which scientists are still learning about.
The doctors noted that being a novel virus, many of these measures, protocols and tactics have been, at best, educated guesses at fighting a virus that is still being studied.
The doctors, in a letter addressed to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, further said “during the early days of the pandemic, the general sentiment was to hold on for a vaccine to come and save the day”.
“We were told that these vaccines were our only way out of this pandemic, providing immunity against infection, preventing severe/critical disease hospitalisations and death. Over time, however, all these have been shown to be false assertions.”
According to the medical practitioners, the vaccines do not prevent infections or spread.
“Recent studies show that the vaccinated are becoming more relevant in the spread of COVID-19. Many studies show outbreaks within fully-vaccinated populations. Other studies show vaccinated populations as sources for outbreaks,” the letter stated.
The doctors reiterated that over the last few months of 2021, the assertion that these COVID vaccines reduce the risk of hospitalisation and death has been shown to be inaccurate as well.
Backing their words with evidence, they said “in the state of Vermont, USA, it has been shown that 79% of deaths in September 2021 were among fully vaccinated individuals”.
“Over the month of September last year in the UK, approximately 79% of deaths were among fully vaccinated individuals as well. There are even schools of thought that theorise that the vaccinated are the main drivers of the pandemic.”
The doctors said many of the highly-vaccinated countries like Israel and UK are experiencing rising cases while other studies show that higher vaccination rates do not equal to less cases and less deaths.
They said Ghana may well be on its way to herd immunity, if not there already.
The doctors further stated that “per our cultural practices, it is not practical to expect Ghanaians to do away with social physical contact,” adding: “Many Ghanaians have probably recovered from mild or asymptomatic disease and developed acquired immunity.”
The medical professionals also said a seroprevalence study in a lorry station in Accra yet to be published, showed about 70% of the samples collected had antibodies to COVID-19 probably after recovery from the virus.
They told President Akufo-Addo that per his dietary advice during the early days of the pandemic, many Ghanaians may have strengthened their immune systems after eating more of our local dishes and fruits which tend to be high in vitamins, minerals and other micronutrients.
The concerned doctors said the treatment guidelines that the Ghana Health Service put together for the treatment of COVID-19 seem to have really been effective, enabling most of the peripheral hospitals to treat COVID-19 positive cases except those that may need ICU care.
They are suggesting that other cheap and safe treatment options like ivermectin, fluvoxamine and adjuncts like thiamine, methylprednisolone etc., should be looked into.
In addition to that, “further research into locally made remedies and treatments for COVID-19 should be at least be considered.”
As concerned doctors, they are advising the government to quit the rollout of these vaccines “whose risks, per the data and studies we have shown far outweigh any potential benefits.”
They said they cannot in good conscience stand by and watch the lives of innocent Ghanaians be gambled away, and their basic freedoms and rights of health abused.
Responding to their concerns, however, the health minister told GBC’s morning show on Wednesday, 12 January 2022: “We started vaccinating since March last year . Adverse effects don’t seem to have come up so much in the open”, adding: “We don’t have them and that goes to confirm the fact that this information cannot be right”.
He said: “People will tell you different stories: somebody says I wasn’t getting pregnant but after the vaccination I got pregnant. We can’t confirm these theories”.
Mr Agyemang-Manu pointed out: “Israel is giving the fourth booster now, as we speak for those above 60. So, those concerned people [Doctors], tell us which part of the world have they stopped vaccinating people so that we can copy”.
“I don’t want to debate science. You are fully vaccinated, have you lost anything?” he asked the host of the show.
Asked if he was disregarding their concerns, he said “Definitely yes, adding: “For me, yes; with all impunity. I mean, I don’t understand this. Some of us read science a little bit; [we’re] not medical people but we know from infancy that vaccination is supposed to protect people from certain illnesses. We call them vaccine-preventable diseases. So, why haven’t we suspended vaccines of children and immunisation across the globe?”
The minister said “the Concerned Doctors have no scientific evidence and knowledge because I move with medical people and I take advice from medical people and the type of people I move with also have knowledge just like the concerned people; they have never told me that we need to suspend this”.