Following controversial remarks by Tanzania's president, WHO urges country to stick to science in fight against Covid-19

Tanzania's President John Magufuli speaks at the Jamhuri stadium in Dodoma, Tanzania, on August 29, 2020.

(CNN)The World Health Organization (WHO) is urging officials in Tanzania to follow science in the fight against the coronavirus, after the country's president said the approved vaccines are "dangerous" and that "not all vaccines are of good intentions to our nation."

"Urging #Tanzania to ramp up public health measures such as wearing masks to fight #COVID19. Science shows that #VaccinesWork and I encourage the government to prepare for a COVID vaccination campaign," WHO's Regional Africa Director Dr. Matshidiso Moeti said on January 28, following President John Magufuli's comments from the previous day. "WHO is here to support the government and people of Tanzania," Moeti added.
WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus echoed Moeti's comments, saying "I join @MoetiTshidi's call for strong health measures and #COVID19 vaccine preparedness. Data-sharing by #Tanzania is also key, with cases surfacing among travelers and visitors over the months."
    President Magufuli, who was reelected in a disputed October 2020 election, has been downplaying the virus and has told the health ministry not to rush to purchase vaccines.