Coronavirus Africa: Live Update 2
Updated: Apr 17
"With over 1,400 confirmed cases of coronavirus and severe prevention and containment measures being enacted by governments across the continent, the COVID-19 pandemic is now a part of African life."
We published the above two days ago. It is likely that by the end of today, Africa's 4000th coronavirus case will be confirmed. It will most likely happen in South Africa, where about a quarter of African cases can be found.
Here are a few of the major coronavirus stories happening across Africa this week.
Algeria will impose a night curfew in nine more provinces to limit the spread of the coronavirus, the prime minister's office said on Friday. Earlier this week the government imposed a night curfew in the capital and a full lockdown in the neighbouring province of Blida.
Morocco will spend an initial 2 billion dirhams ($200 million) to help its health system cope with the coronavirus outbreak, the finance ministry said on Friday as the number of confirmed cases in the country rose to 333. It will spend the money on 1,000 more intensive care beds, 550 ventilators and 100,000 testing kits, as well as medicine and other equipment, the ministry added.
Corona-free: South Sudan
Human rights groups have condemned the "unnecessary and excessive use of force" by Kenyan police as the country imposed a dusk-to-dawn curfew amid efforts to slow the spread of the new coronavirus. On Friday, police fired tear gas at a crowd of ferry commuters in the port city of Mombasa before the 7pm to 5am curfew came into force, 20 human rights groups, including Amnesty International, said in a statement on Saturday.
Today, the Ministry of Health, Somalia confirms the second case of coronavirus (COVID-19) in Mogadishu. This is also a Somali citizen.
Corona-free: Burundi, Comoros
Four people have died in the Democratic Republic of the Congo from the new coronavirus, and more than 50 new cases have been confirmed. President Felix Tshisekedi has declared an emergency.Borders are closed and travel to and from the capital, Kinshasa, has been banned.
President Faustin-Archange Touadera, in a statement received by AFP on Friday, said that after four cases of infection had been detected, all among people coming from abroad, a fifth had now surfaced.
A shaken South Africa on Friday announced its first two deaths from the coronavirus as the country’s cases rose above 1,000 and a three-week lockdown began, with some police screaming at the homeless on emptying streets. The health minister said the deaths occurred in Western Cape province, home of Cape Town.
The decision is seen as hurting an economy already struggling with a drought, shortages of foreign exchange and a staggering unemployment rate of over 90%, forcing people to survive on informal trade.
Corona-free: Malawi, Lesotho, Botswana
Small business owners worry about cash flow as Nigeria prepares to go into lockdown later on Thursday. Nigerians are bracing for a partial lockdown from Thursday as authorities try to contain the spread of coronavirus cases in the country of about 200 million people.
According to reports, the measure was to keep out the coronavirus which has engulfed all of West Africa except for Sierra Leone. The country tested two cases which turned out to be negative. The border closures come in the wake of same action taken by neighbours Guinea and Liberia. Guinea president Alpha Conde declared a state of emergency on Friday also for 30-days over the virus.
Corona-free: Sierra Leone, Sao Tome and Principe