Coronavirus Africa summary: cases, deaths and news - 9 August

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Coronavirus live Africa: latest Covid-19 news - Sunday 9 August


Africa Covid-19 update: 02:00 WAT on Monday 10 August (03:00 CEST) 

According to the latest figures published by Johns Hopkins University19,773,447 cases have been detected worldwide, with 729,393 deaths and 12,031,518 people recovered.

South Africa: 559,859 cases / 10,408 deaths

Egypt: 95,492 cases / 5,009

Nigeria: 46,577 cases / 945 deaths

South Africa case numbers continue to decrease

Africa's worst-affected country has continued to see a drop in the daily number of new coronavirus cases compared to the last few weeks, recording 6,670 new cases on Sunday to bring the cumulative number of confirmed cases to 559,858.

Doctors in Kenya said to be faking Covid-19 test results

Kenyan authorities are investigating claims that doctors in Kenya are hiding positive coronavirus test results in patients who have died to allow families to give the person a normal burial.

It has been brought to our attention that a few doctors are behaving very strangely. It is their colleagues who have flagged them,” Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe said, per the Daily Nation.

Kenya beds

Kenyan welder Meshack Otieno (right) makes hospital beds using metal at his workshop in Juja, Kiambu, Kenya, last month. Otieno, who started making the beds in December 2018, with an aim to help patients who are bed ridden in their homes and cannot afford the imported hospital beds, hopes that with the coronavirus pandemic, he will get orders from public hospitals to make up the shortage in beds currently being experienced due to the increasing number of new Covid-19 patients in the country. Otieno argues that his beds are long lasting compared to the imported ones as he uses metal and is much more affordable as well.

(Photo: EFE/EPA/Daniel Irungu)

Covid-19 leaves thousands of students stranded in France

Bars, churches closed in Malawi amid uptick in cases

Bars and churches have been ordered to close in Malawi after coronavirus cases in the African country doubled over the past month. Gatherings of more than 10 people have also been banned, and face masks are now obligatory in public places.

Case numbers "are rising at an alarming rate", Information Minister Gospel Kazako said, according to CGTN. "The problem is big and we must all stand up. Covid-19 is here and it is killing people."

Bars will still be allowed to serve alcohol to take away.

According to Johns Hopkins University, there have been 4,624 Covid-19 cases in Malawi, leading to 143 deaths.


Restrictions on religious gatherings eased in Nigeria

A woman washes her hands outside the Holy Cross Cathedral in Lagos on Sunday, following the easing of restrictions on religious gatherings in Nigeria amid the Covid-19 pandemic. The Nigerian government this week allowed churches and mosques to reopen at 50% capacity.


Rwanda Covid-19 update

Six new Covid-19 cases were identified out of 4452 samples tested on Saturday. This brings the cumulative number of confirmed cases to 2348. To date, 1300 patients have recovered and been discharged, including three in the past 24 hours. The number of active cases is 828 and six deaths. The latest fatality is a male aged 51 years old from Kigali.

Egypt participates in 2020 African Caucus on Covid-19 recovery

Egypt’s Minister of International Cooperation Rania Al-Mashat and the Governor of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE), Tarek Amer took part in the 2020 African Caucus of the Governors of the World Bank Group (WBG) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

The minister presented global studies issued by the African Economic Commission at the United Nations, which anticipates continent-wide growth to decrease by 1.8% according to the best scenarios and about 2.5% in the worst scenario. This would also see between 5 million and 29 million people potentially returning to extreme poverty on the back of the pandemic. Additional data presented by the International Labor Organization (ILO) indicates that 19 million of the continent’s citizens face jobs losses due to the current crisis.

Algeria eases coronavirus restrictions

Algeria announced further easing of coronavirus lockdown, including shortening an overnight curfew, lifting some travel curbs and allowing large mosques to reopen. The country has recorded 34,155 coronavirus infections, with 1,282 deaths. In June, it resumed some economic activity, mainly in the construction and public works sectors, and allowed the reopening of some businesses.

The new measures include lifting a travel ban on 29 provinces from 9 August until the end of the month. During that period, a curfew will be shortened and will run from 11 pm to 6 am from the current 8 pm to 5 am, the government said.

Mosques with a capacity of more than 1,000 worshipers can reopen from 15 August, though weekly prayers on Fridays, which are usually attended by larger numbers of people, will remain banned throughout the country. The use of air conditioners in mosques remains banned, as does a prohibition of access for women, vulnerable people and children under 15 years, the government said.

Algeria ended a curfew and travel restrictions for its remaining 19 provinces in July.

Tributes paid to big-hearted Kashamu

Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun expressed his sadness over the death of Senator Buruji Kashamu, who passed away from Covid-19-related illness at the weekend. 

“I received the sad news of the passing of Senator Buruji Kashamu today with a deep pain and grief that words cannot capture. On behalf of my family, the Government, and good people of Ogun State, I convey our deepest condolences,” he said in a statement. “His demise further diminishes the tribe of my close political associates. He was a large-hearted politician and courageous fighter for whatever cause he believed in. He was not just a loving personality, a generous giver, and someone who lived for others, he was to many a beacon of hope of a better tomorrow. This painful exit is much more than the end of an individual. Our brother and friend was a consummate politician and patriot who will be sorely missed within and outside Ogun State for his larger than life disposition. Posterity will accord him his due recognition for his legacies of service and forthrightness. He was a worthy Ambassador of Ogun State".

Cashing in on Covid

A new BBC documentary focuses on those who are making money off the back of the Covid-19 crisis in Africa. Anas Aremeyaw goes undercover to expose those who are selling out their colleagues for money. The programme will be broadcast on Monday 10 August.

Lagos Covid-19 update

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu confirmed that a total of 32 patients who had previously tested positive for Covid-19 have now recovered from the virus and were discharged from hospital on Saturday. The patients, 12 females and 20 males including 5 foreign nationals tested negative in two consecutive tests.

Ethiopia: Covid-19 update

A detailed look at the cases and deaths associated with coronavirus across Ethiopia.

Mozo: your robot waiter

One way to reduce human contact is to replace human roles with robots. Meet 'Mozo', the waiter doing the rounds in Cairo.

Here's what is known about the relationship between cigarette smoke and the coronavirus

Secondhand smoke isn’t believed to directly spread the virus, experts say, but infected smokers may blow droplets carrying the virus when they exhale.

Being able to smell the smoke might be a red flag that you’re standing too close to the smoker. The respiratory droplets people spray when they talk, cough or sneeze are believed to be the main way the virus spreads. And people also exhale those droplets when smoking, as well as when they’re vaping.

“Not only are they potentially spreading virus by not wearing a mask, they are blowing those droplets to the people around them to potentially get infected,” says Dr. Albert Rizzo, chief medical officer for the American Lung Association.

Read the full piece from AP below

Senator Buruji Kashamu dies of coronavirus

A former senator representing Ogun-East senatorial district, Buruji Kashamu, has died of Covid-19 complications at the First Cardiology Hospital in Lagos. His death was announced by his “friend” and former colleague in the Senate Ben Murray-Bruce.

“I have just lost my good friend of forever to Covid-19,” Murray Bruce said on Twitter.

Kashamu was the third politician and high-profile Nigerian to die of COVID-19 complications at First Cardiology. Abba Kyari, the former chief of staff to President Muhammadu Buhari and Senator Abiola Ajimobi, who was the immediate past governor of Oyo State, also died at the hospital.

South Africa passes another unwanted milestone

More than half of the deaths are from KwaZulu Natal with 154 fatalities, followed by the Eastern Cape with 39; Limpopo at 37; Western Cape with 22; North West with 21; and Northern Cape with 5.

The country continues to see a drop in the number of new infections with 7 712 new cases confirmed bringing the cumulative number of confirmed cases to 553 188.

Covid-19 catch-up

Here is a selection of some of the coronavirus-related stories that have been making the headlines over the last 24 hours:

- Botswana’s rough diamond exports plunged 68% percent in the second quarter of the year as the pandemic hits demand

- the continent of Africa is set to go into recession for the first time in 25 years

- Algeria eases coronavirus restrictions, including travel curbs and curfew

- Olympic and world 3,000m steeplechase champion Conseslus Kipruto has announced that he has tested positive for Covid-19

- Under 1% of Nigerian population have been tested for Covid-19

- Zimbabwean doctor tells BBC that many Covid-19 sufferers are unable to get to hospital and are dying from the disease in their homes

Africa Covid-19 update: 06:00 WAT on Sunday 9 August (07:00 CEST) 

According to the latest figures published by Johns Hopkins University19,637,506 cases have been detected worldwide, with 726,781 deaths and 11,939,109 people recovered.

South Africa: 553,188 cases / 10,210 deaths

Egypt: 95,314 cases / 4,992

Nigeria: 46,140 cases / 942 deaths

Coronavirus live Africa updates: Good morning

Hello and welcome to our live, Africa-focused coverage of the coronavirus pandemic, which as of 06:00 WAT had registered over 19.6 million cases and more than 726,000 deaths worldwide, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

In Africa, according to the latest update by the World Health Organization (WHO), positive cases have passed the million mark while over 21,000 people have died of the virus.