Sheikh Mansoor bin Mohammed receives Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine

The son of Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid is the first UAE royal to be shown being inoculated after the vaccine's registration for public use in Dubai

Sheikh Mansoor bin Mohammed hailed Dubai health authorities for launching the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccination campaign after being inoculated.

Sheikh Mansoor – son of Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai – the chairman of Dubai’s Supreme Committee of Crisis and Disaster Management, is the first senior figure in the country to be pictured receiving the vaccination.

His father was one of several leading UAE Cabinet members to take China's Sinopharm vaccine after its approval for emergency use in September.

The Sinopharm vaccine was subsequently approved for use by all members of the public this month.

"Thank you, Dubai Health Authority, for leading the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccination campaign, and thank you once again to our first line of defence heroes who continue to work with full dedication and sincerity," Sheikh Mansoor said.

"The UAE has and will always prioritise the health, safety and security of its community."

The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine was made available in Dubai on December 23.

As part of a phased strategy, doses will initially be available to the following groups in the next three months – people aged over 60, those with chronic diseases, people with disabilities, frontline workers and those who work in essential sectors.

Dubai plans to inoculate 70 per cent of its population with the Pfizer-BioNTech by the end of 2021 in a campaign free of charge for citizens and residents, a health official said.

The emirate began the first phase of the vaccination campaign last week, focusing on priority groups including those 60 and older, people with chronic medical conditions, those with disabilities and frontline workers.

"We are targeting to vaccinate approximately 70 per cent of the population of Dubai by the end of 2021. We want to reach the herd immunity that is required," said Farida Al Khaja, chairwoman of Dubai's steering committee for Covid-19 vaccinations.

Ms Al Khaja said a second phase beginning in April would be open to all citizens and residents.