Too early to celebrate Africa’s low Covid-19 case numbers

A man walks between rows of beds inside the male section at a Covid-19 isolation centre at the Sani Abacha stadium in Kano, Nigeria, on April 7, 2020. PHOTO | AMINU ABUBAKAR | AFP

What you need to know:

  • When Melinda Gates recently suggested that Covid-19 will hit Africa hard, many Africans were not amused and she was attacked on social media.
  • However, the low case numbers being witnessed in Africa have not been explained in a way that can convince one that Africa will be spared the wrath of the virus.
  • Even more important would be to establish if the low numbers are indeed a true reflection of a low prevalence of the disease in the continent or a product of low testing rates in African countries.

  • Whatever the case African governments need to have learnt from other countries and must choose courses of action that were missed by countries in Europe and North America.

On April 12, 2020, Melinda Gates, wife of Microsoft billionaire, Bill Gates, and co-chair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, made a stark forecast about the fate of Africa in the age of the coronavirus global pandemic, suggesting that the African continent is set to suffer great consequences if the pandemic reaches a peak there in similar ways like in Europe, America and Asia.


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