September 27, 2021

Tunisia: the Minister of Health, Faouzi Mehdi, sacked in the midst of an epidemic rebound

The Tunisian Minister of Well being, Faouzi Mehdi, was sacked Tuesday night July 20, at the finish of the first day of an distinctive vaccination marketing campaign open to all adults for the most vital Muslim vacation, at the top of contamination. to coronavirus.

The pinnacle of the Tunisian authorities, Hichem Mechichi, has determined to sack the Minister of Well being Faouzi Mehdi, introduced his companies in a concise assertion, with out explaining the causes for this sacking, whereas the authorities is already weakened by tensions.

Faouzi Mehdi is behind the short-term opening of vaccination to all Tunisians over 18 for 2 days, Tuesday and Wednesday, on the event of the Eid al-Adha holidays, the most vital Muslim holidays.

This opening led to a rush in the 29 vaccination facilities involved, inflicting scenes of scrambling and lots of disappointments in the face of the speedy exhaustion of obtainable doses.

Confronted with the success of the operation, the Ministry of Well being had introduced earlier in the day that it might proceed it ‘for the subsequent few days’, earlier than proscribing entry to vaccination to these over 40 as of Wednesday to keep away from new crushes.

The Minister of Social Affairs, Mohamed Trabelsi, will turn into interim Minister of Well being, in a authorities already weakened by the departure of many ministers not changed after a reshuffle remained unfinished.

President Kaïs Saïed, who enjoys vital recognition, refused in January to permit ministers to be sworn in, but validated by Parliament. End result: the authorities has since many interim ministers cumulating a number of features, together with Justice or the Inside.

The president, at odds with the principal parliamentary get together, the Islamist-inspired motion Ennahdha, appointed Hichem Mechichi final August.

However the latter had launched this reshuffle, which involved a dozen ministers, in coordination with Ennahdha to make sure the authorities the help of his parliamentary coalition.

The Ministry of Well being was then assigned to a physician from Sousse (east), however Faouzi Mehdi had lastly retained his portfolio due to this political disaster.

‘Race towards time’

Since March, Tunisia has summoned its inhabitants to be vaccinated by age group. Solely these over 50 and sure precedence professions are presently involved, whereas the nation has been experiencing an unprecedented enhance in instances for a couple of weeks with overwhelmed hospitals.

Tunisia has formally registered practically 550,000 instances of coronavirus, together with 17,644 deaths.

The vaccination marketing campaign has been sluggish for a very long time, particularly as vaccine shares had been very restricted till not too long ago. Some 937,000 folks have been absolutely vaccinated, or about 8% of the inhabitants, a price too low to curb contagion though it’s amongst the highest in Africa.

Confronted with shortages of oxygen, medical personnel and resuscitation beds, the well being scenario in Tunisia has turn into catastrophic, prompting many nations to ship medical help in current days.

Tunisia, 12 million inhabitants, now has round 3.2 million doses and is predicted to exceed the 5 million vaccines obtainable in mid-August, the Ministry of Well being informed AFP.

‘It is a race towards time,’ pediatrician Rafla Tej Dellagi, head of the Tunis heart vaccination heart, informed AFP. In accordance with her, 100,000 folks needs to be vaccinated per day towards 40,000 presently to chop the chain of transmission.

The vaccines needs to be obtainable in pharmacies from subsequent week for folks over 40 years outdated.

The federal government has been criticized for its administration of the epidemic, particularly after a authorities assembly in an upscale resort with swimming pool in Hammamet (east), this weekend, regardless of the visitors bans and whereas leaders of hospitals, at their finish, creaked.