By the time the WHO (World Health Organization) declared on January 30, 2020, that COVID19 was an international public health emergency, no one imagined the magnitude of the damage this disease would do across the world. and how long it would last. In view of the deadly journey that COVID was creating from country to country, it became evident that government actions or inactions, as well as the political, economic and social context, were as responsible as the virus for the impacts caused.
The COVID-19 pandemic is far from abating: infections continue to crop up in many countries with the emergence of new, more contagious variants of the SARS-COV-2 virus. The long-awaited vaccines have begun to circulate but may well be out of reach for most of the world for months or even years following a sort of “vaccine apartheid”. Despite the limited availability of vaccines – given the time required for production and testing – many rich countries have purchased stocks of vaccines sufficient to immunize their populations at least twice; and they support the monopoly control of pharmaceutical companies over vaccines through legally enforceable intellectual property rights in the World Trade Organization.
This edition of the Nyéléni newsletter presents extracts from documents and research carried out by practitioners and defenders of food sovereignty, and in particular, Making the Voices of the Field Heard: from the COVID-19 pandemic to a radical transformation of our systems. food, prepared by the Civil Society and Indigenous Peoples Mechanism to Committee on World Food Security. Links to reports and documents are attached to the extracts.