Doctors in most public hospitals in Kenya’s capital Nairobi have begun strike on Friday over pay and lack of COVID- 19 protection. The doctors say their salaries were delayed and they lack protective equipment (PPE`s) when handling patients who may have Coronavirus.
The Kenya medical practitioners, pharmacists and dentists union, Thuranira Kaugiria said, 320 doctors employed by the Nairobi county government were taking part in the strike that began midnight on Friday.
The strike action is also in protest against inadequate health insurance, poor quality protective gear and too few isolation wards to treat covid-19 patients. The head of the government-run Kenya medical supplies authority has been suspended over allegations the agency procured low quality items and inflated prices of others.
The strike will not affect private hospitals and public hospitals within Nairobi run by the national government.
Latest data show 31,441 confirmed Coronavirus cases in Kenya, 620 deaths in more than 400,000 tests conducted so far. At least 13,500 patients have recovered. The majority of confirmed cases have been in the capital.
In a separate incident on Friday, police used tear gas against dozens of protesters who had gathered at freedom corner in Uhuru park to demonstrate against allegations of corruption in the procurement of protective gear.
Activists say they are considering launching private prosecutions of some officials.
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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.
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