South Africa has eased restrictions as COVID cases drop. President Ramaphosa says previous restrictions succeeded in reducing infections. South Africa is the country hardest hit by the pandemic in all of Africa, with a total of more than 1and a half million confirmed cases and nearly 50,000 deaths.
South Africa’s president Cyril Ramaphosa announced on Sunday that the nation will move from coronavirus alert level three to one in light of the fall in daily new infections. Under level one, most remaining restrictions on economic activity will be lifted.
He said restrictions put in place over the holiday period had succeeded in reducing infections levels – from 90,000 a week at the end of December, to 10,000 new infections last week.
President Ramaphosa said all energy and effort must now go into growing the economy, while exercising extreme caution to prevent further spread of the virus. He said during an address to the nation that new infections, admissions to hospitals and deaths have fallen significantly and continue to decline steadily. He said the threat of a third wave is constantly present, as is the threat of new variants emerging.
He said social distancing, avoiding crowds and wearing masks, are more important than ever. More than 67,000 frontline healthcare workers have been vaccinated over the last ten days — with the number of vaccination sites available in the country expanding from 17 to 49.
Ramaphosa added that the country had secured a further 11 million vaccines from Johnson & Johnson — which is expected to provide 57-85% efficacy against mild to severe disease caused by the more contagious coronavirus strain present in the country.
India: Delhi Announces Lockdown As COVID Cases Surge
India’s capital city, Delhi, has announced a week-long lockdown effective today, Monday, after the city recorded a spike in number of infections that has now overwhelmed the city’s healthcare system.
Government offices and essential services, such as hospitals, pharmacies and grocers, are open during the lockdown.
Delhi recorded nearly twenty-five hundred cases of the coronavirus infections on Sunday alone.
India has been reeling from a deadly second wave since early April causing a shortage of hospital beds and oxygen supplies.
India has the fourth highest number of deaths after the United States, Brazil and Mexico – though, among a population of nearly one and a half billion.
Delhi state’s chief minister, Arvind Kejriwal says the healthcare system is at a breaking point, and if a lockdown is not put in place now, the country will be looking at a bigger disaster.
NCDC Confirms 26 New COVID-19 Cases
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control says 26 new cases of covid-19 have been recorded in the country bringing the total number of infections in Nigeria to 164,233.
The data shown on its official twitter handle on Sunday say the new cases were registered in five states including, Ebonyi 10 cases, Kano-Two, Lagos nine, Osun-two Oyo-one and the Federal Capital Territory-FCT two cases.
So far, more than 154,000 persons have recovered from covid-19 and discharged from hospitals since the pandemic was reported in 2020.
NCDC has advised Nigerians to take responsibility to protect themselves, loved ones, customers, employees and society by disinfecting surfaces in their homes, shops and offices regularly to prevent the spread of infectious diseases in their communities.
Africa CDC Laments COVID-19 Vaccines Delay
Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) is in a dilemma over how the continent is going to continue coronavirus vaccination campaign. The CDC says it cannot predict when second covid-19 vaccines will arrive because deliveries are delayed,
The head of the Africa CDC John Nkengasong said on Thursday, many Africans who have received their first covid-19 vaccine do not know when they will get a second shot.
Africa CDC report shows Africa lags behind most other regions in covid-19 vaccinations, with just less than 14 million doses having been administered on the continent of 1.3 billion.
So far, the majority of the vaccines available in African countries have been delivered via the world health organization-backed Covax facility. Covax aims to deliver 600 million shots to some 40 African countries this year, enough to vaccinate 20% of their populations.
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