The coronavirus was confirmed in the Chinese city of Wuhan in late December 2019. Cases have since been confirmed in over scores of countries across the globe.
The World Health Organisation, WHO has since declared it a pandemic. WHO chief Tedros Ghebereyesus said whiles China had a robust health system to detect and control, his outfit remained concerned about the virus entering countries with weak systems.
With about 34 African countries currently with recorded cases, governments continue to roll out increasingly robust measures to halt the spread and to contain the pandemic which has claimed a number of lives.
Coronaviruses are a family of viruses that range from the common cold to MERS coronavirus, which is Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus and SARS, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus.
In this article, we will share the latest developments as authorities implement measures to contain the spread of the virus, especially on the African continent. There is a flurry of restrictions across Africa as governments take measures to deal with the outbreak.
African tally hits 1,400, deaths pass 40 mark
The WHO tracing portal as of March 23 put the number of cases at 1,396 with the last known case being in Mozambique, which case was confirmed on March 22.
But the figures for some countries are not updated for example Nigeria is quoted as having 22 cases at a time, the disease control outfit has officially declared 30 confirmed cases.
The tally continent-wide thus stands at 1,400 and over with 40 plus deaths. Nigeria, The Gambia and Zimbabwe have reported their first deaths as of today. In all, 43 countries have registered cases with Egypt’s 294 followed by South Africa and Algeria with 274 and 201 respectively.
South Africa tally up to 274
South Africa confirmed on Sunday (March 22) that its coronavirus tally had reached 274 out of 9,315 tests run so far. It is the second most impacted country behind Egypt whose figures are inching past 300 marks.
Ghana, Nigeria and Zimbabwe all recorded marginal increases today. Ghana now stands at 24, Nigeria at 30 and Zimbabwe confirming its second case. DR Congo also reported two cases, the first outside the capital Kinshasa.
Local news portal, Actualite CD quoted the governor of Katanga province as confirming two cases in the city of Lubumbashi. The governor has since imposed a lockdown to be enforced by security forces effective tomorrow.
The two patients were aboard a Congo Airways flight that flew in from Lubumbashi. All other passengers on the flight have been put into quarantine as authorities look to trace possible contacts.
Meanwhile, after a trip to Namibia, Botswana president Eric Masisi has started a 14-day self-isolation which will include testing for COVID-19, the office of president confirmed late Sunday. The president will work from home over the period and stay quarantined from his family.
He flew to Namibia for the swearing-in ceremony of counterpart Hage Geingob. Namibia has three confirmed cases. Botswana has no case. Members of the president’s entourage have also been advised to undertake self-isolation.