Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Spain records 1,500 new cases as coronavirus spreads to over 20 African countries

Spain records 1,500 new cases as coronavirus spreads to over 20 African countries
March 14
15:53 2020

Spain confirmed more than 1,500 new cases of coronavirus between Friday and Saturday, raising its total toll to 5,753 cases, the second-highest number in Europe after Italy.

The country was expected to declare a state of alert on Saturday to try to mobilise resources to combat the virus, which has so far killed 136 people on its soil.

Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez was due to speak at a cabinet meeting at 1300 GMT to announce the state of alert and new measures expected to limit the movement of people.

On Friday said the government would adopt a series of extraordinary measures in order “to mobilise all the resources of the state to better protect the health of all of its citizens”.

The number of cases in Spain has increased tenfold since Sunday, and bars, restaurants, and all sporting and cultural institutions have been closed.

In Africa, over 20 countries which include Rwanda and Namibia have recorded cases of coronavirus, according to the BBC. 

Rwanda confirmed its first case when an Indian citizen arrived in the country from Mumbai. 

BBC reported that Rwanda’s national airline has suspended all flights to India, and a number of public events have been cancelled. Washbasins and sanitiser units have also been set up around Kigali, the country’s capital city. 

Sudan was reported to have confirmed that a 50-year-old man has died from the virus, while in Ethiopia, a Japanese man who recently travelled to the country tested positive to the virus.

Burundi has also reportedly quarantined 34 people in a hotel as a precaution.

In Uganda, the authorities have ordered that visitors from a number of affected countries self-quarantine for 14 days, or should not visit.

Reacting to the development, Matshidiso Moeti, the World Health Oganisation’s regional director for Africa was quoted to have said “every country can still change the course of this pandemic by scaling up their emergency preparedness or response.” 

WHO said it has now shifted from “readiness” to “response” mode in tackling coronavirus in Africa.

Nigeria’s index case of coronavirus flew into the country from Milan, which has the highest record of the disease in Europe, on February 24.

Akin Abayomi, Lagos state commissioner for health, had said a recent test carried out on the index case showed he is doing well but still secretes a little amount of the virus.


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