Moderna Says Omicron Vaccine To Be Ready Early 2022
Moderna says a new vaccine to fight the omicron strain of the coronavirus could be ready by early 2022 if required. The stock soared as much as 14% to the highest level in two months, after jumping 21% during Friday’s global risk-asset selloff,?to reclaim?its place as the top performer on the S&P 500 year-to-date. Chief Medical Officer Paul Burton?said the company mobilized hundreds of workers on Thanksgiving Day last Thursday in order to start work on omicron.
Barbados Gains Independence From British Monarch
Barbados has become a republic, replacing the British monarch as its head of state and severing its last remaining colonial bonds nearly 400 years after the first English ships arrived at the Caribbean island. The new republic was born to the cheers of hundreds of people lining Chamberlain Bridge in the capital, Bridgetown, at the stroke of midnight. Prince Charles, the heir to the British throne, stood somberly as the royal standard was lowered and the new Barbados declared, a step which republicans hope will spur discussion of similar proposals in other former British colonies where Queen Elizabeth II remains their sovereign. Sandra Mason was sworn in as?Barbados’s first president in the shadow of?Barbados’s parliament.
G7 Urges Urgent Action On Omicron COVID-19 Variant
G7 health ministers called for urgent action to combat the highly transmissible new Omicron Covid-19 strain spreading across the world as the WHO warned of potentially severe consequences. Australia and Japan led the growing list of countries imposing fresh travel restrictions or slamming shut their borders as the new strain, first identified last week in southern Africa, spreads rapidly to Europe, Asia and North America. Many governments, particularly in western Europe, had already struggled with rapid rises in cases and have reintroduced mandatory mask-wearing, social-distancing measures, curfews or lockdowns.
Parag Agrawal Appointed As Twitter CEO
Parag Agrawal will take over as the new Twitter Chief Executive Officer following Monday’s stepping down of co-founder Jack Dorsey from the position.? Dorsey in a statement says he decided to leave Twitter because the company is ready to move on from its founders. He says his trust in Parag as Twitter’s CEO is deep. Dorsey will remain a member of the board until his term expires at the 2022 meeting of stockholders.
WHO Calls For Treaty Against Next Pandemic
The WHO says the world must study the wreckage of Covid-19 and say never again by striking a pandemic preparedness treaty, as countries gathered to build the foundations of a new accord. World Health Organization director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus says another disastrous pandemic was bound to happen unless countries showed the resolve to strengthen global defences. Nations are meeting in Geneva from Monday to Wednesday to discuss an international agreement setting out how to handle the next pandemic — which experts fear is only a matter of time. WHO member states reached a consensus Sunday on kick-starting the process towards a pandemic treaty.
Biden Rejects Further Travel Restrictions
President Joe Biden told Americans not to panic over the newly identified Covid variant Omicron and said he does not foresee new lockdowns or extending travel restrictions for now. Biden says the virus variant, is a cause for concern, not a cause for panic. He stressed that the United States was in a good position to control Omicron’s spread without having to resort to lockdowns or more travel bans beyond restrictions already imposed on eight southern African countries. Biden promised a detailed strategy for the fight against Covid-19 this winter but signalled that Americans will not be subjected to burdensome measures.
South Africa Lashes Out As Travel Bans Increase
More African countries joined the rush to suspend air links with the south of the continent after the emergence of a new Covid variant, sparking a cry of anguish from South Africa. The world’s widening travel bans also prompted the postponement of Africa’s biggest shop window for investment, as a glittering top-name gathering in Abidjan was postponed. South Africa says it is being made a scapegoat for discovering the Omicron variant. Foreign ministry spokesman Clayson Monyela says It is quite regrettable, very unfortunate about travel restrictions imposed by a fellow African country. He noted that South Africa had recently made substantial donations of vaccines to some of the countries that were now imposing flight bans.
Rwanda Begins Administering Covid Booster Jabs
Rwanda’s health ministry has announced that it will start giving third doses to the elderly and those who have underlying conditions starting on Tuesday. The ministry says the implementation will be done in phases and will begin in the capital, Kigali. Rwanda’s minister of state in charge of primary healthcare says third doses will be given to those who are over the age of 50. The World Health Organization says this group should get an additional jab, as they are at higher risk of infections after their first vaccines.
China Pledges One Billion Covid Vaccine Doses To Africa
President Xi Jinping has pledged that China will donate one billion additional coronavirus vaccine doses to Africa. Mr Xi says 600 million jabs would be sent directly, while the remainder would be delivered by other means, including through investing in vaccine production sites in Africa. President Xi made the promise during the triennial China-Africa forum which is underway in Senegal. He also said Beijing would encourage Chinese companies to invest $10bn in Africa over the next three years.
UAE Pledges $2bn to Support Nigeria’s Mining Sector
The office of the past ruler of Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, His Royal Highness, Sheikh Hamdan bin Khalifa, has pledged the sum of $2 billion to Nigeria. The Khalifa and Global Peace Ambassador, United Nations, Zulfiquar Ghadiyali, says the donations was to further cement the close trade and bilateral relationship that exists between the two countries. The Minister of State, Mines and Steel Development, Mr Uchechukwu Sampson Ogah noted that the Expo provided the opportunity to showcase the potentials of the Nigerian minerals sector on Dubai soil with special emphasis on gold and other precious minerals abundant in Nigeria.