Director of the Africa Center for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC), John Nkengasong, on Wednesday called for strong continental and global collaboration to contain the rapid spread of COVID-19 in Africa.
As of Wednesday, the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Africa surged to 1,064,546 as the death toll rose to 23,839. The number of people who recovered from their COVID-19 infections also reached 758,292 so far, according to the Africa CDC.
Speaking exclusively with Xinhua on Wednesday, Director of the Africa CDC, a specialized healthcare agency of the African Union (AU) Commission, stressed that “we are seeing rapid increase in the number of COVID-19 infections across the continent.”
Nkengasong emphasized the need to work under cooperation, collaboration and partnership principles in Africa and beyond across the globe, and commended the Chinese government and enterprises, such as the Jack Ma and Alibaba foundations for their support to Africa’s fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
Nkengasong, noting that about 63 percent of African countries have reported less than 5,000 COVID-19 positive cases, stressed that “we still have a very good opportunity to intensify the fight against COVID-19 as a continent.”
Noting that the number of COVID-19 testing in Africa is “encouraging” as more than 9 million people have been tested so far, the director, however, stressed that African countries still need to intensify their testing capabilities.
Nkengasong also emphasized that as a continent Africa needs to conduct about 15 million tests per month to be ahead of the pandemic.