The Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said the intellectual property from any effective vaccine should be made available for local manufacturing and swifter distribution.
Africa CDC chief John Nkengasong told reporters that Africa’s 1.3 billion persons have “all kinds of differences in genetic makeup, so we want to be sure that we are participating fully” in vaccine trials.
As the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic crashes across Africa, more than 644,000 confirmed virus cases have been confirmed in the continent with nearly half of the cases in South Africa alone.
The latest figures show South Africa has 311, 000 cases with positive tests now increasing at a rate of more than 10,000 per day.
There have been widespread speculations that any successful vaccine will be snapped up by richer countries and that Africa will be last in line, an echo of the time when it took years for affordable HIV drugs to become available.
Nkengasong said the continent has more than 80 potential clinical trial sites with the ability to enroll participants and monitor them carefully. He also warned that “we are in for a long, long journey” in this pandemic.
Uganda ‘To Begin Human Trials’ Of COVID-19 Vaccine
Uganda is set to start human trials of a COVID-19 vaccine starting in November as the country continues to fight against the pandemic.
The vaccine trials are a partnership exercise between Uganda’s Virus Research Institute and the United Kingdom’s Imperial College.
Uganda has recorded more than 7,000 coronavirus cases and 75 fatalies so far.
According to BBC, Monica Musenero who is the head of a presidential taskforce on epidemics is quoted as saying the first trial will be conducted on 10 Ugandans.
She added that if successful, a second trial will involve about 100 to 200 persons followed by a final trial of between 1,000 and 3,000 persons.
WFP Seeks Aid For South Sudan Flood Relief
Heavy seasonal rainfall, followed by devastating floods in South Sudan since June, have impacted more than 700,000 persons across the country. A large part of the nation is reported to be under water with the Nile River at its highest level in 50 years.
South Sudan was already in a precarious situation due to food shortages from an overwhelming locust infestation and a health crisis from the global coronavirus pandemic.
The World Food Programme (WFP) says it has been providing food assistance to more than half a million persons in South Sudan’s flood-affected areas as the threat of famine increases within the country.
A flood-displaced victim from Mathiang village says rains have destroyed everything, including houses, cattle, crops and sources of livelihood.
WFP spokesperson, Peter Smerdon says they are already under pressure in South Sudan because of conflict, high levels of displacement and, the added burden from flooding.
World Food Programme is now seeking to raise 58 million dollars to continue providing relief.
Libyans Protest Armed Militias In Tajoura City
Libyans have taken to the streets in the southeast of the capital Tripoli to protest against the presence of armed militias in the city of Tajoura.
Clashes broke out on Thursday between two militias loyal to the Tripoli-based and UN-recognized government of national accord. Militias used heavy weapons in a residential suburb that consequently resulted in the death of at least three persons. Several others were reported injured from the two camps and some private properties were damaged.
The United Nations support mission in the country had called for an urgent security reform on Friday as they reminded both parties of international humanitarian law obligations.
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