Up to 190,000 persons in Africa could die from the novel Coronavirus (Covid-19) in the first year of the pandemic if it is not kept under control, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO).
Similarly, 26% of the continent’s one billion inhabitants could be infected by Covid-19 if measures to curb the virus fail, WHO Africa Director Matshidiso Moeti added at a press conference on Thursday.
Many countries have taken steps to limit the spread of the virus, and some, such as South Africa, have been strengthening the measures they have already taken.
WHO fears that since Covid-19 is spreading more slowly in Africa than elsewhere in the world, it could affect the continent over a longer period. African countries need to be proactive in fighting the virus, Moeti said, adding that they need to test, isolate and treat.
Health authorities have reported over 52,100 cases of Covid-19 infection in Africa and more than 2,000 deaths from the virus, which has had dire economic consequences for many Africans.