A large percentage of young South Africans, between the ages of 18 and 24 years of age, are the most unwilling to get vaccinated against Covid-19.

This, according to new research by Ask Afrika, which also shows that only 62% of adult South Africans say they are willing to get a Covid-19 vaccine.

Ask Afrika CEO, Andrea Rademeyer says another 11% of residents are still sitting on the fence.

Rademeyer says the country’s overall vaccine-acceptance is much lower than the average of 70% recently reported in studies conducted by the University of Johannesburg and the Human Sciences Research Council.

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Government has now significantly ramped up and changed its communications-strategy to reduce vaccine-hesitancy among South Africans.

Director General at the GCIS, Phumla Williams says research has shown that vaccine-hesitancy is especially high in rural communities.

She says messaging now also includes scientific evidence & research to educate residents about the safety of the vaccines.

Williams says the covid-19 vaccination programme is the biggest in South Africa’s modern history.

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An employment law expert says, at this stage, it appears getting a Covid-19 vaccine will remain a voluntary decision.

Jamie Jacobs, from the firm Webber-Wentzel, who participated in a virtual panel-discussion hosted by Cape Town Tourism, says employers should, for now, engage with their employees on the safety and efficacy of the vaccines, to encourage them to get the jab.

Jacobs says current vaccination-legislation does not make injections compulsory.

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