The director of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention of the African Union (Africa CDC), John Nkengasong, said today that the pandemic is reaching maximum speed in Africa, calling for widespread use of masks.
“We crossed the critical number of 500 thousand cases. The pandemic is reaching maximum speed and, therefore, I would like to make an appeal to the continent: we must be courageous, bold and deliberate in the implementation of measures if public health in general, ”said John Nkengasong.
The Africa CDC director, who was speaking today from Addis Ababa at the weekly meeting with journalists, called for widespread use of masks.
“We have to increase the use of masks in all countries. Mask, mask, mask, ”he said in an analogy with the World Health Organization's recommendation to“ test, test, test ”.
The African official also underlined the importance of countries continuing to expand their capacity to test the population and the need to involve populations in the fight against the coronavirus.
On the progression of the disease on the African continent, John Nkengasong said that, according to data from this morning, the continent recorded 522.104 accumulated cases of infection with the new coronavirus, resulting in 12.206 deaths, which represents a lethality rate of 2,3 %.
"Since last week, there has been an increase of 24% in new cases, which means about 100 thousand new cases and an average of 14 thousand cases per day compared to the daily average of 11 thousand cases last week", he added.
South Africa (42%), Egypt (15%), Nigeria (6%), Ghana (4%) and Algeria (3%) are responsible for 71% of all cases recorded in Africa.
According to Africa CDC, 5,7 million tests were carried out on the continent, 8,6% of which were positive.
About 80% of the tests were carried out in only 11 countries: South Africa, Morocco, Egypt, Ghana, Ethiopia, Uganda, Kenya, Mauritius, Rwanda, Nigeria and Senegal.
The director of Africa CDC said that, through the African Union's online shopping platform, 1,4 million tests were purchased, to which should be added 1,3 million donated by the German Government.
"There will be 2,7 million tests and with their distribution we will come very close to the goal of extending the testing to 10 million that we established in April," he said.