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Increasing death rates in South Africa raise doubts over Covid-19 announced figures

The death toll in the worst-hit African country has recently increased by 60%, with the country reporting more than 10,000 new cases every day.

A relative and a pastor overlook as undertakers wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) bury the casket containing the remains of Steward Motlhabane, who died of COVID-19 coronavirus, during the funeral at the Westpark cemetery in Johannesburg, on Jul

South Africa has recorded 60% more natural deaths than expected in recent weeks, which raised suspicion over the Covid-19 related official death numbers reported by the state, as it seems very unusual for natural deaths rate to increase by such a large percentage.

South Africa is currently the African country to have been the worst-hit by Covid-19 and of the five most-affected countries globally, reporting more than 10,000 new confirmed cases on a daily basis.

The South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC)- that is an independent body funded by the government- released a statement that reads “In the past weeks, the numbers have shown a relentless increase – by the second week of July, there were 59% more deaths from natural causes than would have been expected based on historical data”

Researchers of SAMRC believes that there has been 17,000 excess deaths in South Africa between the first week of May and mid-July. Some of them suffered from conditions that could have been treated and cured in normal cases.

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Researchers suggest that the Covid-19 death toll figure announced by the state is not accurate, with the World Health Organization (WHO) having expressed doubts over the alarming surge in numbers in Africa and especially South Africa, warning that this might be starting to Covid-19 outbreaks in other spots.

“I am very concerned right now that we are beginning to see an acceleration of disease in Africa,” Michael Ryan, the director of the WHO’s health emergency program, told reporters.

New researches are to be conducted by SAMRC scientists to find out whether the published figures in South Africa are underestimated, and assess the volume of danger the country is encountering.