Minister of Justice and Correctional Services Ronald Lamola will officially launch the COVID-19 vaccine campaign for inmates and prison staff on Monday, July 19.
According to the department, many of the correctional officers have been jabbed as part of the ongoing national vaccination drive, which is currently targeting citizens over 50 years old.
About 90 vaccine sites have been set up countrywide for inmates and staff. The launch will take place at the Johannesburg Prison Management Area.
Because of the potential spread of COVID-19 in prisons due to crowded cells and limited movement, the department said it’s important to prioritize inmates and guards in the vaccine program.
“Outbreaks of COVID-19 in correctional centers have the potential to spread to communities, hence the need to vaccinate both inmates and officials,” said the department.
Minister Lamola is also expected to take the lead and be first in line to get the vaccine during the launch.