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China and Africa’s Solidarity Against COVID-19

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China and African leaders Covid-19

China and Africa’s Solidarity Against COVID-19

On June 17, the Peoples Republic of China and African leaders met via a teleconference to discuss ways and strategies against the ravaging COVID-19, in furtherance of their joint efforts against the pandemic. The meeting, a joint initiative of President Xi Jinping of China, was held in collaboration with South African President Cyril Ramaphosa and Senegalese President Macky Sall, the current rotating chair of the African Union (AU) and the co-chair of the Forum on China Africa Cooperation. (FOCAC) respectively.

In attendance were many other African Union Assemblies of Heads of State and government, including President Buhari of Nigeria. Also, the rotating chairs of major African sub-regional organizations, the Chairperson of the AU commission, the Secretary-General of the UN and the Director-General of the WHO, attended the virtual meeting as special guests.

It will be recalled as the first country to face the COVID-19 scourge, China has been actively sharing its experiences with African countries in their fight against the disease. So far, data from the African Centre for Disease Control and Prevention revealed that total numbers of confirmed cases have exceeded 285,000 and more than 7,700 people on the continent have died from the virus as at June 20.

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Over past decades, Sino-Africa friendship has been built on mutual respect and understanding, which had been advanced through mutual support in overcoming myriad challenges. In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, China and Africa have today written a new chapter in their friendship, promoting the building of a community based on shared values. Sino-Africa relations became invigorated in late 1960’s when the gale of independence swept through the African continent and since then the relationship has witnessed unprecedented progress with China staunchly supporting Africa’s growth and prosperity. In this millennium, Sino-Africa friendship can best be described as being at an all-time high never seen before.

In his opening statement at the Summit, President Xi Jinping underscored how Sino-Africa friendship had stood the test of time, especially in putting up a fierce fight against COVID-19, including the enormous sacrifices to earn ‘’hard-won results’’ and bring the situation under control. He noted how governments and people in Africa have put up a united front under the efficient coordination of the African Union (AU), taking strong measures to effectively slow the spread of the virus.

President Xi further stated that in the face of COVID-19, China and Africa had offered mutual support to each other and fought shoulder to shoulder against the pandemic. China, he said, will always remember the invaluable support Africa gave China at the height of its battle with the Coronavirus. In return, he stressed, when Africa was struck by the virus, China was the first to rush in with assistance and has since stood firm with the African people.

When China was struck by the Coronavirus, over 50 African leaders had expressed their solidarity with the country, through phone calls, video calls and public statements and, in return China had offered humanitarian support by sending expert medical teams to Africa’s five sub-regions and surrounding countries, including supplying tonnes of protective gears and other relevant medical equipment to many African countries to support their fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. The African community in China also benefitted from the support provided by the Chinese authorities just like its citizens.

The proposal by the Chinese President to convene a high-level Summit with African leaders in solidarity against COVID-19 has been viewed as a great idea coming at the right time, in the light of China and Africa’s long history of collaboration and mitigating common problems. Based on this perspective, the Summit is expected to further accelerate the pace of the long existing friendship between China and the African continent.

Some of the expected benefits of the solidarity summit were duly highlighted by President Xi in favour of Africa and these include – providing supplies, expert teams, facilitating Africa’s procurement of medical supplies from China, construction of the Africa CDC headquarters, construction of China-Africa friendship hospitals and cooperation to be derived between twined Chinese and African hospitals.

China also pledged the deployment of COVID-19 vaccine to Africa whenever it is developed. Within the context of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) initiative, China similarly pledged to cancel the debts of some African countries in the form of interest-free government loans that are due to mature by the end of 2020. On a broader partnership level, China also announced its intention to work with the UN, WHO and other partners, to assist Africa’s response to COVID-19 in a way that respects the will of the continent.

President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria, in addressing the Summit, urged the international community to support collaboration aimed at sharing knowledge from research and science to fight the pandemic. “As we face a common, pervasive enemy, it is important that we all remain united to save our shared humanity, because this virus knows no borders”, he stressed.

The Nigerian leader also used the occasion to commend the Chinese government under President Xi Jinping, the UN Secretary-general, Antonio Gutierres and the WHO for the respective actions and measures to help the developing and middle-income countries of Africa to tackle the pandemic.

As for the significance of the Summit to both China and Africa, in the light of the COVID-19 pandemic, experts and scholars from different parts of the world have viewed it in very favourable terms with Charles Onunaiju, Director at the Centre for China studies in Abuja, Nigeria, saying the most significant aspect of the meeting is in the underlying international response, particularly by China to the pandemic.

“China has accumulated significant experience in response to the pandemic. Leaders have shared the experience of their respective response mechanisms”, he noted, and expressed confidence in the prospective joint fight against the pandemic by China and Africa.

A Pakistani and Executive Director at the Islamabad-based Centre for International Strategic Studies, Ali Sarwar Naqvi said the Summit had drawn close attention of countries around the world to the fact that China’s support will be very critical to Africa’s fight against the pandemic.

China’s Xi Jinping buttresses this fact when he said in one of his many quotes at the Summit : “I am convinced that humanity will ultimately defeat the virus and that the Chinese and African people are poised to embrace better days.”

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NCDC Launches Online Course On COVID-19 And Other Infectious Diseases

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NCDC online courses

NCDC Launches Online Course On COVID-19 And Other Infectious Diseases

The Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) said it has launched a course on Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) for the Coronavirus and other infectious diseases.

The course, which will be taught online, is aimed at reducing the risk of transmission of COVID-19 and other infectious diseases amongst the general public, particularly the health care workers in Nigeria.

This was disclosed in a statement that was made available to the general public by the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control.

According to the latest report by NCDC as at July 6, 2020, a total of 29,286 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 654 deaths have been recorded in Nigeria. Additionally, as at 02 June 2020, about 812 health care workers have been infected in-country, compared to over 230,000 infected health workers around the world.

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The NCDC pointed out that the national strategy in response to COVID-19 has been in different forms and in the absence of a vaccine or cure for the virus, compliance with IPC measures remains one of the most effective interventions to control the ongoing outbreak.

The NCDC has made efforts to rapidly strengthen the capacity of frontline healthcare workers in infection prevention and control wherever health care is provided. Since the first case in Nigeria was confirmed in February, NCDC has supported the training of about 17,436 health workers in IPC and works in collaboration with the Departments of Hospital Services and Food and Drugs of the Federal Ministry of Health (FMOH), to ensure that health workers are provided with the required personal protective equipment (PPE) to reduce the risk of health workers’ infection.

To ensure that IPC training, knowledge and information is easily accessible to everybody that needs it, the Infection Prevention and Control Unit of the NCDC, with technical assistance from eHealth Africa, has developed a COVID-19 IPC online course. The course features modules on standard and transmission-based precautions, use of personal protective equipment (PPE) and other essential aspects of infection control in healthcare. A certificate of participation will also be awarded at the end of the course by NCDC.

The online course is also designed to document vital information to monitor IPC compliance across health facilities at the primary, secondary and tertiary levels, both in public, private and faith-based facilities in Nigeria. Infection prevention and control measures cuts across all other components of the COVID-19 response in Nigeria and is critical for strengthening national health security.

Please note that registration for the free online course on infection prevention and control can be done using the link here- https://elearning.ncdc.gov.ng/courses/infection-prevention-and-control-for-covid-19/.

The NCDC is Nigeria’s public health institution, which has the mandate to lead the preparedness, detection, and response to infectious disease outbreaks and public health emergencies. The Bill for an Act to establish NCDC was signed into law in November 2018, by President Muhammadu Buhari. The mission for the NCDC (2017-2021) is ‘To protect the health of Nigerians through evidence-based prevention, integrated disease surveillance and response activities, using a one health approach, guided by research and led by a skilled workforce.’

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Health Minister – Report Anyone Who Demands Payment For COVID-19 Test

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Payment For COVID-19 Test NCDC

Health Minister – Report Anyone Who Demands Payment For COVID-19 Test

The Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire has asked Nigerians to report any Nigerian Center for Disease Control (NCDC) worker or Ministry of Health personnel that demands payment before COVID-19 test is carried out in the country.

 

There have been reports circulating since last week that the Federal government charges as much as N50,000 for Covid-19 testing and the Health Minister has now rubbished those reports.

 

Speaking on Monday July 6, during a briefing by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 in Abuja, the Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, said COVID-19 testing remains free.

“I wish to remind everyone that government-run testing for COVID-19 is free. Please report anyone who demands payment for necessary action,” he said.

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According to Ehanire, Nigeria has recorded a total of 28,711 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the country, 11,665 discharged patients and 645 deaths out of 152,952 tests conducted as of July 6.

 

Ehanire also revealed that June alone recorded half the total number of deaths recorded so far.

“It means that just under half of the total fatalities so far recorded occurred in that single month of June. While we more than doubled the tests done and the number of cases detected.

“The reduction in case fatality rate is down to about 2.2 per cent as opposed to about 5 per cent we have seen on global average,” he added.

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NCDC – 626 New Cases of Coronavirus Confirmed In Nigeria

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NCDC New Cases of Coronavirus

NCDC – 626 New Cases of Coronavirus Confirmed In Nigeria

Nigeria on Thursday, July 2, recorded 626 new cases of Coronavirus as confirmed in a tweet shared by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC). 

 

A breakdown of the new cases across different states in the country is as follows; Lagos-193, FCT-85, Oyo-41, Edo-38, Kwara-34, Abia-31, Ogun-29, Ondo-28, Rivers-26, Osun-21, Akwa Ibom-18, Delta-18, Enugu-15, Kaduna-13, Plateau-11, Borno-8, Bauchi-7, Adamawa-5, Gombe-4, Sokoto-1.

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As at July 2, there are 27,110 confirmed cases of Coronavirus in the country. 10,801 patients have been discharged and 616 deaths has been recorded.

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#COVID19NIGERIA Situation Report

http://news.ncbn.ng/2020/06/04/coronavirus-and-the-adversity-of-the-asymptomatic-bala-ibrahim/

@Africa CDC

The African Union and Africa CDC will virtually rollout the Partnership to Accelerate COVID-19 Testing (PACT) in Africa tomorrow 4 June, 2020 at 11.00 am Eastern Africa Time.

The African Union and Africa CDC will virtually rollout the Partnership to Accelerate COVID-19 Testing (PACT) in Africa tomorrow 4 June, 2020 at 11.00 am Eastern Africa Time.

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Gallant Officer
"Also found worthy of honour was Bashir Abubakar, an Asst Comptroller-General of Customs, who rejected a bribe of $412,000 per container offered him by drug traffickers seeking to bring 40 containers of Tramadol into Nigeria. A fine example of incorruptibility, worthy of emulation"

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