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Africa coronavirus cases top 300,000 with more than 8000 deaths

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More than 307,000 Africans have now contracted the novel coronavirus and over 8,000 of them have died, according to the latest data released by the Africa Center for Disease Control on Monday.

Africa CDC said as of 9 a.m. East African Time on Monday June 22, 2020, at least 307,479 people had contracted the potentially deadly bug in Africa and 8,149 had died.

South Africa remains the worst hit country in Africa with close to 2000 deaths and about 100,000 cases, the data show. the country of President Cyril Ramaphosa has more than 30 percent of all cases in Africa and over 23 percent of all deaths.

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Over all, 146,708 cases have been closed in the continent, leaving Africa with 160,771 active cases.

The World Health Organization (WHO) Africa region noted on June 11, 2020, that it took 98 days to reach 100 000 cases in Africa, and only 18 days to move to 200 000 cases. Right now, it has taken just about 11 days to increase to more than 307,000 cases.

Ten out of 54 countries are still driving the rise in numbers, accounting for nearly 80% of all the cases. More than 70% of the deaths are taking place in only five countries: Algeria, Egypt, Nigeria, South Africa and Sudan.

“For now Africa still only accounts for a small fraction of cases worldwide,” said Dr Matshidiso Moeti, World Health Organization (WHO) Regional Director for Africa. “But the pace of the spread is quickening. Swift and early action by African countries has helped to keep numbers low but constant vigilance is needed to stop COVID-19 from overwhelming health facilities.”

“Stay-at-home orders and closing of markets and businesses have taken a heavy toll, particularly on the most vulnerable and marginalized communities,” Dr Moeti said on June 11. “So, the need to balance between saving lives and protecting livelihoods is a key consideration in this response, particularly in Africa.”

Globally, the World Health Organization (WHO) warned on Monday that COVID-19 rather than ending was accelerating dangerously around the world with the highest number of cases reported in a single day on Sunday.

The WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus sounded the red alert at his regular press briefing from Geneva, Switzerland.

“It seems that almost every day we reach a new and grim record. Yesterday, more than 183,000 new cases of COVID-19 were reported to WHO – easily the most in a single day so far,” Dr. Ghebreyesus said.

“More than 8.8 million cases have now been reported to WHO, and more than 465,000 people have lost their lives.

“Some countries are continuing to see a rapid increase in cases and deaths. Some countries that have successfully suppressed transmission are now seeing an upswing in cases as they reopen their societies and economies.

“All countries are facing a delicate balance, between protecting their people, while minimizing the social and economic damage. It’s not a choice between lives and livelihoods. Countries can do both.

“We urge countries to be careful and creative in finding solutions that enable people to stay safe while getting on with their lives.

“We continue to urge all countries to double down on the fundamental public health measures that we know work. Finding and testing suspected cases works,” he added.

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Simon Ateba
Simon Ateba
Based in Washington, District of Columbia, United States of America, Simon leads a brilliant team of reporters, freelance journalists, analysts, researchers and contributors from around the world to run TODAY NEWS AFRICA as editor-in-chief. Simon Ateba's journalistic experience spans over 10 years and covers many beats, including business and investment, information technology, politics, diplomacy, human rights, science reporting and much more. Write him: simonateba@todaynewsafrica.com

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