Coronavirus Africa summary: cases, deaths and news - 30 May

Coronavirus live Africa: latest Covid-19 news - 30 May

Africa

Africa Covid-19 update: 01:30 WAT on Sunday 31 May (02:30 CEST)

According to the latest figures published by Johns Hopkins University, 6,054,187 cases have been detected worldwide, with 368,711 deaths and 2,562,191 people now recovered.

Nigeria: 9,302 cases / 261 deaths
South Africa: 30,967 cases / 643 deaths
Ghana: 7,768 cases / 35 deaths

We're going to take a break from the live feed for a while but we'll be back in a few hours with more news and reaction as it breaks... Follow the new daily feed.

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Coronavirus cases in South Africa pass 30,000, says minister

The number of coronavirus cases in South Africa rose past 30,000 on Saturday, Minister of Health Zweli Mkhize said. South Africa reported 1,727 new cases, taking the cumulative total to 30,967. The death toll increased by 32 to 643.

Botswana to help repatriate citizens stranded abroad

Botswana will help repatriate citizens stranded abroad by coronavirus travel bans, with more than 100 due to arrive on Wednesday from Ethiopia, President Mokgweetsi Masisi said on Saturday. Botswana ended a 48-day lockdown a week ago, allowing businesses and schools to reopen under strict conditions but its borders are still closed with only returning citizens and essential goods allowed in.

'In order to alleviate the plight of our citizens abroad who have been adversely impacted by the pandemic, mostly students and those affected by the global travel bans, we have decided to assist them with financial assistance to either cope where they are or to return them home,' Masisi said in a televised speech. Masisi said the government has helped 400 return from South Africa and neighbouring countries. Botswana has recorded just 35 coronavirus cases and one death. But the economy has been severely hit, with real gross domestic product forecast to contract by 13% in 2020. 

Latest figures from Malawi...

The latest figures from South Africa...

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In pictures: A worker walks past safely spaced desks following safe distancing measures amid the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, at the Seshegong secondary school in Olivenhoutbosch, South Africa (REUTERS/Siphiwe Sibeko).

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said the coronavirus pandemic would not hinder growth of democracy and the electoral processm in Nigeria...

Nigeria, third in Covid-19 cases

With 9,302 coronavirus cases, the West Africa nation ranks only behind South Africa and Egypt as African nations most badly hit by the Covid-19 virus.

S.Africa to allow domestic air travel for business from June 1

South Africa will allow domestic air travel for business purposes only from June 1 as the country further eases coronavirus lockdown regulations, the transport minister said on Saturday.

The country has been largely shut since a nationwide lockdown began in late March. South Africa has reported 29,240 cases of the new coronavirus, with 611 deaths.

From next month, Africa's most industrialised economy will allow most economic sectors including mining and  manufacturing to fully resume operations and has also allowed the sale of alcohol but for home consumption.

"As the country moves to level 3, with more industries resuming operations, learners returning to school, the transport sector must be responsive to enable mobility of both workers and learners," Minister of Transport Fikile Mbalula said in a televised briefing.

Covid-19 patients who undergo surgery are at increased risk of postoperative death

Patients undergoing surgery after contracting coronavirus are at greatly increased risk of postoperative death, a new global study published in The Lancet reveals.

Researchers found that amongst Covid-19-infected patients who underwent surgery, mortality rates approach those of the sickest patients admitted to intensive care after contracting the virus in the community.

Analysts examined data for 1,128 patients from 235 hospitals. A total of 24 countries participated, predominantly in Europe, although hospitals in Africa, Asia, and North America also contributed. 

An additional 23 million people face acute poverty in sub-Saharan Africa

The president of the International Fund for Agricultural Development Gilbert Houngbo has warned that around 23 million people could be pushed into extreme poverty in sub-Saharan Africa this year alone.

He says that in most of Africa, people are more likely to die from starvation caused by the economic fallout of the pandemic than from the disease itself. “We are hearing from farmers who cannot get seeds or fertiliser for the planting season, their harvests are threatened by a shortage of farm labourers. They cannot sell the produce they do grow because markets are closed. If not addressed, these could lead to serious food shortages across the continent,” he said.

Robots

Rwanda deploys robots to minimise coronavirus risks

At the Kanyinya Covid19 treatment facility - just a short distance from Rwanda's capital Kigali, Akazuba, Ikizere and Ngabo report for duty, but these are no ordinary health care workers. In a bid to minimise contact between patients infected with the coronavirus and doctors and nurses, the country has deployed the three robots to carry out simple tasks like taking temperatures and monitoring patients.

The sleek white robots, with big bright blue eyes and a rather human appearance, were donated by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and are helping frontline workers tackle the coronavirus crisis in the East African nation which so far has 355 confirmed cases of Covid-19.

By relaying messages to doctors and helping the team assess the effectiveness of their clinical decisions, the robots cut the number of bedside visits that doctors have to make. Officials said the robots will be programmed to carry out additional tasks. "In the future if they are programmed to take even blood pressure and the (blood) sugar, that definitely would be so helpful," an official explained.

Kompany declines offer to be Pep Guardiola's assistant

Vincent Kompany has turned down an offer from Manchester City to become Pep Guardiola’s assistant coach, various Belgian media outlets reported on Friday.

Brian Kidd is currently Pep's number two, having taken on the job after Mikel Arteta left City to become manager at Arsenal.

Former City captain Kompany is under contract as player-manager of Anderlecht until 2022, having left the Etihad Stadium last year following a hugely successful spell in England. Kompany, who has never concealed his desire to one day be City manager, said he wants to stay at Anderlecht for the time being.

 

387 new Covid-19 cases and two deaths in Nigeria

Nigeria reported 387 new coronavirus cases in 14 states on Friday. The breakdown of the new confirmed cases are as follows: Lagos (254), FCT (29), Jigawa (24), Edo (22), Oyo (15), Rivers (14), Kaduna (11), Borno (6), Kano (3), Plateau (2), Yobe( 2), Gombe (2), Bauchi (2) and Ondo (1).

 

Nigerian government promises stimulus package for small businesses

Special Assistant to the vice-president Tola Johnson said on Friday that small-scale and medium-sized businesses will receive aid from the government's post-Covid-19 stimulus package.

Meanwhile President Muhammadu Buhari has said that Africa must now pay more attention to manufacturing. He told Newsweek, "We do not seek to grow our manufacturing capabilities in order to grant ourselves a seat at the table of some new great geopolitical game—but merely to play our part as partners in development".

Nigeria must investigate May 2016 killings Of Biafra Day protesters

Amnesty International has made a call for the Biafra Day massacre of 60 pro-Biafra protesters in Nkpor, Anambra on 30 May 2016 to be fully investigated.

Protesters were killed and at least 100 injured by Nigerian security forces with evidence that members of the Nigerian security forces fired live ammunition to disperse the gathering. However, no person suspected of criminal responsibility has been brought to justice. 

Osai Ojigho, Country Director of Amnesty International Nigeria, said families and relatives of victims of the 2016 massacre have been waiting on the Nigerian Government to ensure that those suspected of criminal responsibility of the killings are brought to trial. 

Former Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation MD dies

Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Managing Director Dr. Maikanti Kacalla Baru passed away on Friday night. Dr. Baru, who was 60, died after a brief illness at an Abuja hospital.

South Africa unions tell teachers to stay away from school

South African teachers’ unions and governing associations have urged their staff to defy a government order to return to school next week, saying schools did not yet have protective equipment (PPE) to keep educators and pupils safe, Reuters reports.

South Africa will re-open its economy on 1 June, after two months of lockdown. The country has more than 27,000 confirmed Covid-19 cases but only 577 deaths from the virus. Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga said last week schools would re-open, but only for grades 7 and 12, the last years of primary and secondary school, respectively.

“The education system ... is not ready for the re-opening of schools. If the PPE (protective equipment such as masks and hand sanitiser) have not been delivered by now, chances are slim that all schools will have them on Monday,” the joint statement said.

 

Coronavirus live Africa updates: welcome

Hello and welcome to our live, Africa-focused coverage of the Covid-19 pandemic, which has now caused over 365,000 deaths worldwide.

Join us for the latest news and numbers as they emerge throughout the day

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