GABORONE, (The Southern African Times) – Botswana President Mokgweetsi Masisi and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of NantWorks Patrick Soon-Shiong performed a ribbon cutting ceremony on Monday to launch the construction of vaccine manufacturing plant in Botswana.
The NantBotswana Vaccine Manufacturing Plant will produce Pula Corbevax vaccine against COVID-19 developed in partnership with Texas Children’s Hospital Center for Vaccine Development and Baylor College of Medicine, said Masisi during the ceremony.
The Corbevax vaccine, which was approved by Botswana on Monday, is a protein subunit and patent-free COVID-19 vaccine. And it is believed to be more accessible and can help low and middle-income countries to fight against the pandemic.
Patrick Soon-Shiong stated that Corbevax has been safely administered to over 10 million young Indians, and it has been tested and proven to be effective in all variants, including Omicron.
“The project is important to me personally, to be able to deliver on the promises that Government pledged to Botswana, particularly to drive the transformational development agenda of Botswana from a resource-based economy to a knowledge-based one as espoused in our National Vision 2036,” Masisi said.
NantBotswana vaccine manufacturing plant was not only focused on addressing the COVID-19 challenges, but also other ailments affecting citizens such as cancer, he said.
Patrick Soon-Shiong is a South African-American transplant surgeon, billionaire businessman and bioscientist. He is the founder of NantWorks, a network of healthcare, biotech, and artificial intelligence startups.