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South Africa To Close Schools Again Over Coronavirus Surge

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South African President Cyril Ramaphosa has on Thursday said public schools will close again for a month from Monday to limit the spread of the novel coronavirus as the country grapples with surging infections.

Amid the rising infections among teaching staff in the country, Ramaphosa said during an address to the nation that his cabinet has decided today that all public schools should take a break for the next four weeks,” adding that the academic year that is due to end in December would be extended.

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In the rate of infection, South Africa is the most affected country by the pandemic in Africa and the fifth in the world sitting behind the United States, Brazil, India and Russia. The southern African country has reported 408,052 coronavirus cases and more than 6,000 persons have died from the virus.

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Unions across the country have being calling on the government to revoke its decision to reopen schools for certain grades in June.

Schools will be closed from 27 July and are provisionally scheduled to reopen on August 24.

Ramaphosa said “we have taken a deliberately cautious approach to keep schools closed during a period when the country is expected to experience its greatest increase in infections”.

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The president also announced an “historic” 500 billion rand ($30bn) social relief and economic support package to fund the health response and assist “those in greatest need”.

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Sierra Leone’s Former President Ordered To Appear Before Anti-Graft Commission

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Former Sierra Leone President Ernest Bai Koroma Ordered to Appear Before Anti-Graft Commission

Sierra Leone’s former president Ernest Bai Koroma must appear before an anti-graft commission Monday to answer questions about alleged corruption during his 2007-2018 tenure.

Koroma has previously denied any wrongdoing, calling the move a witch hunt, he said the allegations of corruption involving mining, construction and procurement contracts are “without merit and are a politically motivated charade calculated to impugn my hard-earned reputation”.

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As consequence, Ugandan government has imposed a travel ban on Koroma and more than 100 other officials, including Koroma’s former vice president, Victor Bockarie Foh.

A judicial probe had accused them of unlawfully enriching themselves during his just over a decade tenure.

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On Wednesday, Reuters reported that the All People’s Congress party, which Koroma still leads, is planning to appeal the action against him.

Koroma in a statement has said he had served the country “diligently, fairly and with honour and integrity” saying that he was known for his fight against corruption.

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Coronavirus: Uganda Reopens Borders For Passengers

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Coronavirus: Uganda Reopens Borders For Passengers

Uganda has called for strict compliance with COVID-19 travel protocols as it reopened its international borders for the first time since March.

The country had earlier closed its borders to passenger travel as a control measure to fight the coronavirus pandemic which has now infected more than 8,000 and killed 75 in the country.

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On Thursday morning, the national carrier, Uganda Airlines ran its regional flights to Nairobi, Kenya, and Mogadishu, Somalia, as scheduled.

Other international airlines have also been landing and taking off.

To avoid self-isolation, travellers coming into Uganda will be required to present a negative Covid test taken within 72 hours of their departure.

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But if someone arrives without a test certificate, a sample will be taken and they will be made to quarantine at their own cost as they await results.

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Authorities at the airport are encouraging passengers to use self-service booths where available to minimize contact and also advised out-bound travellers to be at the airport at least four hours before scheduled departure.

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WHO To Probe ‘Sexual Exploitation’ By Aid Workers In DR Congo

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WHO To Probe 'Sexual Exploitation' By Aid Workers In DR Congo

The World Health Organization (WHO) has announced that it had opened an investigation into claims of alleged sexual exploitation and abuse in the context of the Ebola response in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).

The actions were allegedly perpetrated by individuals identifying themselves as working for W.H.O. during the epidemic.

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WHO says “anyone identified as being involved will be held to account and face serious consequences, including immediate dismissal.

Its statements comes after more than 50 women accused aid workers from the W.H.O. and leading NGOs of sexual exploitation and abuse – including offering sex in exchange for a job.

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The investigation was published by the humanitarian news agency (TNH).

Early June 2020, DRC declared an Ebola outbreak, making it the country’s eleventh in just over 40 years.

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The previous outbreak caused 2,287 deaths and 3,470 cases between august 2018 and June 2020.

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