Coronavirus Africa: news summary for Wednesday 1 July

Coronavirus live: Africa latest news - 1 July 2020

This live feed is now closed. For the latest developments and breaking news relating to the Covid-19 pandemic in Africa, please follow the new 2 July live coverage here.

Egypt reopens airports and welcomes tourists to pyramids after COVID closure

Egypt restarted international flights and reopened major tourist attractions including the Great Pyramids of Giza on Wednesday after over three months of closure due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The country closed its airports to scheduled international flights and shut famous historical sites in mid-March as the government looked to curb the spread of the virus. 

Nigeria to restart domestic flights July 8 in easing of coronavirus curbs

Nigeria will resume domestic flights from July 8, the government said on Wednesday, as Africa's most populous country relaxes novel coronavirus restrictions despite mounting cases and deaths.

The airports for the capital Abuja and Lagos will open on July 8, while a handful of others are set to open July 11 and the rest on July 15, the government said on its official Twitter account.

No date was given for the resumption of international flights.

Nigeria had confirmed more than 25,000 coronavirus cases and almost 600 deaths as of Wednesday, with little sign of the outbreak slowing. Officials have expressed their concern that the outbreak in the West African country might become much worse.

NIgeria WHO breakdown

Africa passes 400,000 confirmed cases

The largest number of cases are in South Africa, where more than 150,000 people have been infected with the virus, and there have been more than 2,650 deaths. Egypt has nearly 70,000 confirmed cases.

Nigeria, in west Africa, has more than 25,600, while Ghana has more than 17,500, Algeria more than 13,000 and Cameroon and Morocco more than 12,000 each.

Mixed reasons for avoiding vaccine trial

About 50 people held protests at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, saying they did not want Africans to be used as guinea pigs, reflecting concerns among some on the continent over testing drugs on people who do not understand the risks.

Africa Union breakdown

South Africa's demographics

Kenya's Covid-19 exposure

As confirmed by the MOH, only six of the 47 counties have not officially recorded a case.

Uganda opens border for DR Congo refugees

Uganda has opened part of its border with the Democratic Republic of Congo to allow in thousands of people stuck in no-man's land for more than a month.

At least 3,000 of them fled their homes in May after inter-communal clashes in north-eastern Ituri province.

Hearts of Oak chief Moore reacts to 2019-20 Ghana football season cancellation 

The Phobians' top official shares his thoughts on the termination of the Ghana Premier League due to Covid-19 

How we got here...

The WHO has put together this short video to help people understand where we are amid the pandemic and what is happening.

When will South Africa open borders and resume international flights?

South Africa, the continent's worst-hit nation, has recently eased many lockdown restrictions during level 3 of the Covid-19 pandemic in the country.

Full details:

Zimbabwe relaxes tourism restrictions

Zimbabwe is to partially reopen its tourism and hospitality industry, a sector which has been badly hit by the lockdown in place in the country over the past three months.

Restaurants will now be allowed to serve sit-in customers, while national parks and safari lodges will be able to reopen.

SA president to hold Covid-19 forum

President Cyril Ramaphosa will host an open forum this evening answering questions on the pandemic from members of the public.

In break with predecessor, Burundi's president vows to tackle coronavirus

Burundi's new president, Evariste Ndayishimiye, has promised steps to combat the spread of COVID-19, a shift from the stance of his late predecessor who dismissed the danger posed by the novel coronavirus.

Ndayishimiye, 52, a retired army general, won a presidential election in May as the ruling party's candidate, defeating six opposition contenders. He had been due to take office in August, but the death of predecessor Pierre Nkurunziza last month brought the succession forward.

 

Greeting advice from the WHO

Greet people with a wave, a nod, a bow or even an elbow bump.... ways of avoiding contact and reducing the risk of passing on the virus.

50 killed in Ethiopia protests over singer's death

At least 50 people were killed in Ethiopia's Oromiya region in protests following the fatal shooting of a popular singer, a regional spokesman said on Wednesday.

Musician Haacaaluu Hundeessaa was shot dead on Monday night in what police said was a targeted killing. Protests broke out the next morning in the capital and other cities in the Oromiya region.

The dead included protesters and members of the security forces, spokesman Getachew Balcha said. Some businesses had also been set on fire.

Haacaaluu's songs provided a soundtrack to a generation of young protesters whose three years of street  demonstrations culminated in the resignation of the previous prime minister and the beginning of an era with greater political freedoms.

Covid cases in Africa

Egypt, South Africa and Nigeria remain the troubled areas relating to positive Covid-19 cases.

Coronavirus cases in South Africa surpass 150,000 barrier

The number of people in South Africa infected with the novel coronavirus exceeded 150,000 on Tuesday, with 6,945 cases reported in the last 24 hours.

A total of 151,209 people have tested positive for the coronavirus, according to the country’s Health Ministry.

Inovio's COVID-19 vaccine candidate shows promise in small early-stage trial

An experimental coronavirus vaccine developed by Inovio Pharmaceuticals Inc showed promise and was found to be safe in an early-stage human trial, the company said on Tuesday.

The vaccine, one of 17 being tested in humans and part of the Trump administration's Operation Warp Speed program, induced immune responses in 34 of the 36 healthy volunteers aged 18 to 50 years, Inovio said.

The company, however, did not disclose more details on the exact response the vaccine induced, saying the full data will be published in a peer-reviewed medical journal later.

Shares of the company fell 10.1% to $28.49 as Wall Street analysts said the initial data provided only a limited look into the vaccine's effects.

Immune responses in the study were measured by the vaccine's ability to generate binding antibodies, or virus-neutralizing antibodies, and T-cell responses, two metrics considered vital for a successful vaccine.

Coronavirus: the complete guide to the Covid-19 pandemic

Coronavirus vaccine trials have begun in South Africa

Africa's first Covid-19 vaccine trial is underway in South Africa. The trial started in Johannesburg, the commercial capital, and Pretoria, the national capital, in Gauteng province, and will gradually spread to other parts of the country. In Johannesburg, some participants are residents of Soweto township. The vaccine, developed by Oxford University's (UK) Jenner Institute, will inoculate two thousand South Africans.

Coronavirus pandemic in Africa - welcome

Hello and welcome to our live, Africa-focused coverage of the coronavirus pandemic, which has registered over 10 million cases and over 500,000 deaths worldwide, according to figures compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

We'll endeavour to keep you up-to-date with the latest developments as they emerge in Africa throughout the day.

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