Africa population: 1.3 billion. COVID-19 cases : 4.5 million. Recovered: 4 million. Deaths: 123,000. Vaccine doses distributed 37.6 million. Vaccine shots administered: 20.2 million. Fully vaccinated 0.39% of population. Needed: More vaccines, money, waivers

The Director of the Africa CDC Dr. John Nkengasong on Thursday laid out the case for more assistance to the African continent to beat the deadly coronavirus pandemic that has claimed more than 123,000 lives in Africa and infected over 4.5 million people, although most of them, about 4 million, have recovered.

At a press briefing from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, the Africa CDC director said only 37.6 million vaccine doses have been received in Africa so far via the COVAX facility and only 20.2 million of them have been administered into African arms.

With a population of 1.3 billion people, only 0.39% of the African population has so far been fully vaccinated.

In addition, with the pandemic lasting over a year, the coronavirus fatigue has set in and many people are no longer wearing masks or social distancing, making it possible that a new wave of infections may hit the continent again.

Dr. Nkengasong described the situation as dire, warning that what is happening in India may happen everywhere in the world, including in Africa.

He thanked the Biden administration for backing a temporary waiver on intellectual property of COVID-19 vaccines but warned that it will take many months, financial and other forms of partnerships for the continent to begin manufacturing its own vaccines, probably at the beginning of next year.

Dr. Nkengasong said new variants from India have been identified in Africa and the death toll for the past one week has slightly increased across the continent.

“People are tired, but the virus is not tired,” he warned, urging people to continue to follow public health measures while calling for more vaccine doses to be sent to Africa.

Below is the coronavirus situation in Africa as of May 6, 2021, according to the Africa CDC

  • ●  As of today, May 6, African Union Member States are reporting the following:
  • ●  Total cases: Over 4.5 million COVID-19 cases have been reported, (4,595,305). This accounts for 3% of total cases reported globally.
  • ●  Total recoveries: Over 4 million people have recovered, (4,143,340). This accounts for 90% of the total cases reported in Africa.
  • ●  Total deaths: Over 123,000 deaths have been reported, (123,265). This results in a case fatality rate (CFR), of 2.7%, and accounts for 4% of deaths reported globally.
  • ●  The following five countries account for 64% of all cases reported in Africa.
    • ○  South Africa: 35% of total cases (1,588,221)
    • ○  Morocco: 11% of total cases (512,656)
    • ○  Tunisia: 7% of total cases (315,600)
    • ○  Ethiopia: 6% of total cases (260,139)
    • ○  Egypt: 5% of total cases (232,905)
  • ●  Case Fatality Rate (CFR): The number of countries with case fatality rates (CFR), higher than the global average of 2.1%[1] has not changed.
  • ●  38% of Member States, (21 countries), are reporting elevated CFRs. COVID-19 Epidemiology Update | VARIANTS

● Since the last briefing, there have been no changes in the number of Member States reporting the B.1.1.7 variant, (currently 20 Member States reporting).

1. Algeria

2. Angola

  1. Cabo Verde
  2. Côte d’Ivoire

5. DRC
6. Equatorial

Guinea 7. Gabon

8. Gambia 9. Ghana 10.Kenya 11.Libya

[1] Republic of Tanzania has not reported since May 2020

12.Malawi 13. Mauritius 14. Morocco

15.Nigeria 16. Rwanda 17. Senegal

18.South Africa 19. Togo
20. Tunisia

 One additional Member State (Gabon), is now reporting the B.1.351 variant since the last briefing, bringing the total to 23.

  1. Angola
  2. Botswana
  3. Cameroon
  4. Comoros
  5. Côte d’Ivoire
  6. DRC
  7. Equatorial Guinea

8. Eswatini
9. Gabon
10. Ghana
11. Kenya
12. Lesotho
13. Libya
14. Madagascar 15. Malawi

16. Mauritius 17. Mozambique 18. Namibia
19. Rwanda 20.South Africa 21. Togo
22. Zambia
23. Zimbabwe

● Three Member States are now reporting the B.1.617 variant, originating in India:

  1. Uganda(1case)
  2. Kenya(5cases-ongoinginvestigation)
  3. Morocco (under investigation)

COVID-19 Epidemiology Update | ONE-WEEK TREND ANALYSIS

  • ●  The following are trends for epidemiological week 17 (26 April – 2 May 2021), compared to the previous epidemiological week 16 (19 25 April 2021):
  • ●  New cases: A total of 65,544 new cases were reported in Africa. This is a 10% decrease from the previous week.
  • ●  The highest proportion of new cases is from the Northern region (38%). The other regions are as follows:
    • ●  Southern region (21%)
    • ●  Eastern region (21%)
    • ●  Central region (12%)
    • ●  Western region (7%)
  • ●  The following 5 countries are reporting the highest number of new cases:
    • ●  Tunisia (11,120)
    • ●  South Africa (8,593)
    • ●  Egypt (7,112)
    • ●  Cameroon (6,252)
    • ●  Ethiopia (6,105)
[1] Republic of Tanzania has not reported since May 2020
  • ●  The following 5 countries are reporting the highest daily incidence per million population, (average number of new cases per million population per day):
    • ●  Seychelles (634)
    • ●  Cabo Verde (481)
    • ●  Tunisia (135)
    • ●  Botswana (119)
    • ●  Namibia (64)
  • ●  New deaths: A total of 2,181 new deaths were reported in Africa.
  • ●  This is a 0.1% decrease compared to the previous week.
  • COVID-19 Epidemiology Update | FOUR-WEEK TREND ANALYSIS
  • ●  The following are trends analysis over the past 4 epidemiological weeks, (5 April- 2 May 2021):
  • ●  New cases: There has been an overall 5% average decrease in new cases reported in Africa each week.
  • ●  The following is a regional breakdown:
    • ○  40% increase in the Central region
    • ○  4% increase in the Southern region
    • ○  0.2 % increase in the Northern region
    • ○  10% decrease in the Western region
    • ○  16% decrease in the Eastern region
  • ●  The following is a breakdown by the most populous countries in Africa:
    • ○  DR Congo: 12% average increase
    • ○  Egypt: 10% average increase
    • ○  South Africa: 8% average increase
    • ○  Nigeria: 5% average decrease
    • ○  Ethiopia: 18% average decrease
    • ○  Kenya: 19% average decrease
  • ●  New deaths: There has been an overall 4% average increase in new deaths reported in Africa each week.
  • ●  The following is a breakdown by the most populous countries in Africa:
    • ○  Egypt: 11% average increase
    • ○  Kenya: 7% average increase
    • ○  Ethiopia: 3% average increase
    • ○  South Africa: 2% average decrease
[1] Republic of Tanzania has not reported since May 2020
  • ○  DR Congo: 45% average decrease
  • ○  Nigeria: 77% average decrease COVID-19 TESTING
  • ●  To date, over 44 million COVID-19 tests (44,502,118), have been conducted in African Union Member States since the pandemic started.
  • ●  Over 774,000 new tests, (774,788), were reported for epidemiological week 17 (26 April – 2 May 2021).
  • ●  This is a 3% decrease from the previous week (797,889 tests reported).
  • ●  The overall positivity rate is 10.3% and the test-per-case ratio is 9.7. COVID-19 VACCINE UPDATE
  • ●  As of 4th May 2021, a total of over 37.6 million vaccine doses have been acquired by Member States, with approximately 20.2 million doses having been administered.
  • ●  This figures corresponds to a coverage rate of 1.14% at the continental level, with 0.39% of the population having received a full vaccine regimen (up by 0.02 percent points from the previous week).
  • ●  To date, AU member states have used 53.8% of the vaccine supply available.
  • ●  In terms of progress, the following are the top five Member States that have administered the most doses of COVID-19 vaccines (based on available country data) :
    • ○  Morocco (9.48 million doses, 88% of its supply, 11.7% of the population fully vaccinated)
    • ○  Nigeria (1.24 million doses, 29% of supply, 0.6% of the population vaccinated)
    • ○  Ethiopia (1.17 million doses, 47% of supply, 1.02% of the population vaccinated)
    • ○  Egypt (1.06 million doses, 67% of supply, 0.24 % of the population fully vaccinated)
    • ○  Kenya (894,076 doses, 88% of supply, 1.66% of the population vaccinated) ● On 30th April, WHO listed the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine (mRNA 1273) for emergency use for all age 18 years and above. [1] Republic of Tanzania has not reported since May 2020

● On 2nd May 2021, South Africa Minister of Health announced the arrival of 325,260 doses of the Pfizer BioNtech vaccine.

● The country expects a total of 1.3 million doses of the vaccine to be delivered by the end of May, which will enable the ramp up of the national vaccination campaign.

Chief White House Correspondent for

Simon Ateba is Chief White House Correspondent for Today News Africa. Simon covers President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, the U.S. government, the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other financial and international institutions in Washington D.C. and New York City.

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