Africa nears 6 million confirmed Covid-19 cases as fatalities hit 151,775

AFRICA — As of today, there are 5,949,740 confirmed cases of Covid-19 from 55 African countries while over 37,004,431 vaccinations have been administered across the continent.

Reported deaths in Africa stand at 151,775 and 5,140,313 people have recovered. South Africa has the most reported cases 2,179,297 and 64,138 mortality cases. Other most-affected countries are Morocco (541,405), Tunisia (491,021), Egypt (282,985), Ethiopia (276,984), Libya (201,236) and Kenya (188,513).

Many countries in Africa have rolled out mass vaccination drives to contain the spread of the virus, even though the uptake of the vital jabs remains in the shadow of the tallies recorded in other regions globally.

Besides vaccinations, various government containment measures have been introduced, including lockdowns, nighttime curfews, bans on large public gatherings and the mandatory wearing of face coverings.

South Africa extended tight COVID-19 rules on Sunday for another 14 days, maintaining restrictions that include a ban on gatherings, a curfew from 9 p.m. to 4 a.m. and a prohibition on the sale of alcohol.

Early this month South Africa recorded a new record of over 26,000 daily cases, stretching hospitals to breaking point.

So far, the vaccine campaign has been slow, with 4.2 million doses administered out of a population of 60 million, but officials are hoping to ramp up daily vaccinations to at least 300,000 by the end of August.

Senegal reported 529 coronavirus cases on Sunday, a record in new daily cases there since the start of the pandemic, and a sign that the third wave of infections was gaining speed.

The growing infection rate has alarmed authorities, but they have stopped short of imposing stringent measures to curb the spread after previous restrictions led to economic hardship that helped to fuel violent protests in March.

Senegal has reported 46,179 coronavirus cases since the start of the pandemic, and 1,194 deaths. So far it has vaccinated close to 600,000 from a total population of around 16 million.

Reuters data shows that the seven-day average for new daily coronavirus infections in Senegal has risen to 194, a third below what the rate was during the peak of the second wave in February.

Malawi is registering a skyrocketing increase in infections of the new Covid-19 Indian variant and 81.2 percent of those that have been infected in the last month are those that have not been vaccinated, a development Minister of Health, Khumbize Kandodo Chiponda, says proves that the vaccine is effective.

Cumulatively, Malawi has recorded 37,983 cases including 1,227 deaths (Case Fatality Rate is at 3.23%). Of these cases, 2,479 are imported infections and 35,504 are locally transmitted. Cumulatively, 33,681 cases have now recovered (recovery rate of 88.7%) and 232 were lost to follow-up, according to a Centre for Disease Control (CDC) update.

Tanzania has recorded 408 new Covid-19 cases since the third wave of the viral disease broke out across the globe, Health Minister Dr Dorothy Gwajima revealed.

Gwajima recounts that while 408 people in Tanzania tested positive for Covid-19, 284 are on oxygen machines.

This latest information compounds Tanzania’s recent emboldened fight against Covid-19. President Samia Suluhu Hassan has on numerous occasions reminded Tanzanians to continue taking precautions to protect themselves from the third wave of the pandemic, on one instance citing some of the regions that have so far been hit by the deadly third wave.

The number of COVID-19 infections recorded by Kenya rose to 188,754 after the health ministry reported 241 new cases on Sunday from tests conducted in the past 24 hours.

The East African continues to see a steady rise in infections despite efforts by the government to contain further spread of the virus.

The health ministry also reported one new death, taking the cumulative virus-related fatalities to 3,722.

A total of 2,015,659 tests have been conducted by the country so far.

The Kenyan government has rolled out various containment measures to curb the spread of the virus, including a nationwide nighttime curfew, a ban on large public gatherings and the mandatory wearing of face masks.

A mass vaccination drive is also currently underway, with some 1,539,087 vaccines administered around the country so far. From this number of vaccinations, 512,127 people have already received the required two jabs.

The number of people that have been fully vaccinated from COVID-19 in neighboring Rwanda has reached 252,842 as the country continues its mass inoculation drive.

According to the ministry of health, the fully vaccination people are part of a cumulative figure of 394,067 persons that have received at least one jab of the vaccine.

Rwanda ramped up its mass vaccination exercise last month after receiving additional 247,000 doses of AstraZeneca through the World Health Organization (WHO) COVAX mechanism.

The vaccination program has prioritized high-risk groups, including the elderly (aged 60 and above), healthcare workers and people with chronic health conditions.

By now, the East African country has reported 48,244 COVID-19 infections with 560 deaths.

The East African county needs at least 13 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to inoculate 60 percent of the population, about 7.5 million people, which it targets to immunize by June 2022.

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