Wednesday, July 15We Break the News
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CORONAVIRUS

30-year-old dies after attending ‘COVID party’

30-year-old dies after attending ‘COVID party’

CORONAVIRUS
"I think I made a mistake. I thought this was a hoax, but it's not." Those were the final words of a 30-year-old patient who died at Methodist Hospital in San Antonio this week after attending a so-called "COVID party," according to the hospital. Dr. Jane Appleby, chief medical officer for Methodist Hospital and Methodist Children’s Hospital, said in a recorded statement that the unidentified patient told nurses about the party, which she said is hosted by someone diagnosed with Coronavirus. "The thought is people get together to see if the virus is real and if anyone gets infected," Appleby said. Appleby said she shared the story not to scare people, but to make sure they understand that the virus can affect anyone. Appleby said her hospital is seeing more cases in people ...
Coronavirus – South Sudan: UNMISS strengthens COVID-19 risk communication at and on public gatherings in Eastern Equatoria

Coronavirus – South Sudan: UNMISS strengthens COVID-19 risk communication at and on public gatherings in Eastern Equatoria

CORONAVIRUS
JUBA, South Sudan, July 11, 2020,/ -- To further increase awareness on how to keep communities safe from COVID-19, the United Nations Mission in South Sudan has reached an agreement with local authorities in Eastern Equatoria State to borrow one of its strategically located billboard spaces for critical messaging on measures to prevent the spread of the virus. “The ministry is pleased to let UNMISS use one of our billboard frames to communicate COVID-19 prevention messages,” says Wani Kute, Director General of the state Ministry of Information. “Informing the public on how to avoid catching or spreading the pandemic is crucial.”Public gatherings and celebrations, not to mention many other social situations in South Sudan, are problematic from a COVID-19 point of view, as exercising phy...
Coronavirus – Nigeria: Phone Survey Data – Monitoring COVID-19 Impact on Firms and Households in Nigeria

Coronavirus – Nigeria: Phone Survey Data – Monitoring COVID-19 Impact on Firms and Households in Nigeria

CORONAVIRUS
WASHINGTON D.C., United States of America, July 11, 2020/ -- Nigeria was among the first countries in Sub-Saharan Africa to identify COVID-19 (coronavirus) cases and has since implemented strict measures to contain the spread of the virus. At the same time, oil prices plummeted by 60% following the spread of the global pandemic. As the oil sector accounts for the bulk of Nigerian government revenue, this collapse in prices has profound implications for the economy. The federal government is confronted with the simultaneous challenge of combatting the public health crisis of the pandemic alongside trying to bolster a weakening economy. Given the mounting evidence that the social and economic impacts of these twin crises are likely to be significant, the government is ramping up policy i...
Coronavirus – Africa: Taming post-harvest losses can boost food security in Africa, say church leaders

Coronavirus – Africa: Taming post-harvest losses can boost food security in Africa, say church leaders

CORONAVIRUS
GENEVA, Switzerland, July 11, 2020/ -- African Church leaders are highlighting the need to tame the continent’s persistent post-harvest losses, as organizations point at rising food insecurity due to the coronavirus pandemic. Although some regions have registered bumper harvests following improved rains, concerns for loss of food in the processes of harvesting, transport, and storage have also emerged.In the past, such losses seen to occur from the farms to dining tables have been a major cause of hunger among rural communities, especially in sub-Saharan Africa, according to church officials and agricultural experts.“A look at what is harvested and how it’s handled, it is visible that post-harvest food losses in Africa are high,” said Ven. J.W Kofi deGrant Johnson, a Ghanaian Anglican ...
Coronavirus – Libya: Lack of COVID-19 tests when boats return risks surge in cases, warns International Rescue Committee (IRC)

Coronavirus – Libya: Lack of COVID-19 tests when boats return risks surge in cases, warns International Rescue Committee (IRC)

CORONAVIRUS
NEW YORK, United States of America, July 11, 2020/ -- Migrants, refugees and asylum seekers intercepted at sea and returned to Libya must be provided with COVID-19 testing to prevent them falling through the cracks and being unable to access the care they need, the International Rescue Committee warns. Since the first COVID-19 case was confirmed in Libya on March 25, over 3,100 people have been brought back to Libya’s shores - and not a single one has been tested for the disease.Given that 28 migrants who left Libya for Italy in June tested positive upon arrival in Sicily, the IRC is extremely concerned about this gap in the country’s COVID-19 response and is calling for testing to be rapidly scaled-up - both at Libya’s disembarkation points and across the country - to ensure all those...
Coronavirus – Africa: Red Cross Red Crescent alarmed at increase in migrant drownings in Mediterranean

Coronavirus – Africa: Red Cross Red Crescent alarmed at increase in migrant drownings in Mediterranean

CORONAVIRUS
GENEVA, Switzerland, July 11, 2020/ -- Red Crescent societies in Tunisia and Libya are seeing an increase in drownings on the shores of North Africa. Warmer weather and relaxed COVID-19 lockdowns are thought to be behind an increase in numbers of people attempting to cross the Mediterranean from North Africa to Europe.Many are not surviving the perilous journey, with 20 percent more people estimated to have died in June this year as opposed to last year, according to the International Organization for Migration (IOM).IFRC President Francesco Rocca said:“While Red Cross volunteers in Italy support those who have managed to survive the crossing, unfortunately on the other side of the Mediterranean, both Libyan and Tunisian Red Crescent volunteers are left to collect the bodies of those w...
oronavirus – South Africa: Member of the Executive Council (MEC) Madoda Sambatha updates on North West Coronavirus COVID-19 cases

oronavirus – South Africa: Member of the Executive Council (MEC) Madoda Sambatha updates on North West Coronavirus COVID-19 cases

CORONAVIRUS
CAPE TOWN, South Africa, July 11, 2020,/ -- At the beginning of COVID-19 experience in the country, experts warned that the country is to expect a sudden surge or sharp increase, particularly during the winter season.  It is the middle of the winter season and the North West Province has indeed experienced an increase in the number of COVID-19 positive cases.  South Africa is now standing at 224 665 positive cases. Out of 9 Provinces, the North West Province is at number 5 of the highest number of cases with 7147 confirmed positive cases and contribute 3.2% of the total number of cases in the country.The Province’s COVID-19 positive cases are largely located within the mining communities with Bojanala standing at 4797, Dr Kenneth Kaunda 1788, Ngaka Modiri Molema 428 and Dr Ruth Segomo...
Coronavirus – Africa: UNESCO and UNHCR on improving refugee youth education in the post-Covid context, a roundtable debate

Coronavirus – Africa: UNESCO and UNHCR on improving refugee youth education in the post-Covid context, a roundtable debate

CORONAVIRUS
PARIS, France, July 11, 2020/ -- UNESCO and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) are convening an online round table on Monday 13 July from 4 to 5.30 pm (2.00—3.30 pm, UTC) to examine ways to optimize schooling and learning for young refugees in the future post-epidemic context. The discussion will be moderated by UN Special Envoy and actor Angelina Jolie, a refugee advocate of longstanding. The meeting is co-sponsored by Canada, the United Kingdom and the global fund Education Cannot Wait, which has earmarked its second Covid emergency allocation for refugees. Exchanges will take place in English with simultaneous translation into French.The meeting will be opened by UNESCO Director-General, Audrey Azoulay, the High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo...
oronavirus – South Sudan: UNMISS conducts door-to-door COVID-19 awareness campaign in Warrap State

oronavirus – South Sudan: UNMISS conducts door-to-door COVID-19 awareness campaign in Warrap State

CORONAVIRUS
JUBA, South Sudan, July 11, 2020/ -- The United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) has embarked on a 14-day-long door-to-door awareness campaign on COVID-19 to reach individual households in Warrap State with messages on how to keep themselves and others safe. When visiting houses, they are distributing posters, postcards, face masks and banners on preventive measures against the pandemic virus.“We are happy that UNMISS is making this awareness-raising effort to the grassroots level,” says Isaac Deng, a citizen of Marjok Noon in Twic County, while suggesting that visits to the cattle camps in the area would also be a good idea.Mr. Deng believes that going from door to door will make the entire local population aware of the seriousness of the virus and thus take the necessary preca...
Coronavirus – Tunisia: UNHCR Tunisia Flash Update #1 COVID-19

Coronavirus – Tunisia: UNHCR Tunisia Flash Update #1 COVID-19

AFRICA, CORONAVIRUS, TUNISIA
GENEVA, Switzerland, April 7, 2020/ -- In line with the announcement by the Tunisian National Security Council of the extension of the general lockdown until 18 April, UNHCR Tunisia will continue to rely on alternative working arrangements, to adapt and sustain existing activities, and to step up support to refugees and asylum seekers to meet current and emerging challenges.UNHCR declared a global internal Level 2 emergency on 25 March, in order to facilitate the response by activating emergency procurement, partner selection and other procedures.Essential support continues to be provided, such as emergency medical care, protection monitoring, psycho-social support, shelter, cash and food assistance, as well as legal assistance for urgent cases (i.e. arrest) and in detention. In-person ac...
WORLD: Chinese embassy warns of Unknown ‘pneumonia’ deadlier than coronavirus sweeping Kazakhstan.

WORLD: Chinese embassy warns of Unknown ‘pneumonia’ deadlier than coronavirus sweeping Kazakhstan.

CORONAVIRUS, HEALTH, INTERNATIONAL
The Chinese embassy in Kazakhstan has warned of a deadly "unknown pneumonia" after the former Soviet republic reported a spike in pneumonia cases since June. "The death rate of this disease is much higher than the novel coronavirus. The country's health departments are conducting comparative research into the pneumonia virus, but have yet to identify the virus," the embassy said in a warning to Chinese citizens in the country. While the Chinese embassy described the illness as an "unknown pneumonia", Kazakhstani officials and media have only said it is pneumonia. It was not clear why the Chinese embassy had described the illness as "unknown" or what information it had about the pneumonia. The embassy's website, citing local media reports, said the provinces of Atyrau and Aktob...
UGANDA: Oxfam Warns of Hunger escalating amid the Pandemic.

UGANDA: Oxfam Warns of Hunger escalating amid the Pandemic.

AFRICA, CORONAVIRUS, UGANDA
KAMPALA – Oxfam has warned that hunger linked to COVID-19 could kill as many as 12,000 people a day by the end of the year, potentially claiming more lives each day than the disease itself. ‘The Hunger Virus,’ reveals how 121 million more people (globally) could be pushed to the brink of starvation this year as a result of the social and economic fallout from the pandemic including through mass unemployment, disruption to food production and supplies, and declining aid. In the Horn, East, and Central Africa (HECA) region, over 47 million people were already food insecure due to the triple crises of floods, locust infestation, and now COVID-19. Lydia Zigomo, Oxfam’s HECA Regional Director said: “DRC, Ethiopia, Sudan, and South Sudan were all already facing humanitarian emergencies...
CORONAVIRUS: Police arrest four COVID-19 escapees in Rwanda

CORONAVIRUS: Police arrest four COVID-19 escapees in Rwanda

AFRICA, CORONAVIRUS, RWANDA
Rwandan police on Thursday arrested four people who had escaped from a COVID-19 treatment centre in Eastern province. The quartet, who contracted the disease and were receiving treatment at the centre set up at a secondary school in Ngoma district, escaped on Wednesday evening after breaking iron window bars, the Ngoma district police said in a statement. Security organs and local leaders worked together to locate their whereabouts and arrested them following a tip-off from people who saw them, the statement said. Security officers and medics are tracing their likely contacts, including their families, according to the statement. The police urged those who could have had contact with the quartet to come forward for tests and due treatment to prevent the spread of the pandemic....
Coronavirus: South Africa (SA) and Zambia should formulate Innovative Solutions to manage COVID-19 effects on Economic Relations – Deputy Minister Gina

Coronavirus: South Africa (SA) and Zambia should formulate Innovative Solutions to manage COVID-19 effects on Economic Relations – Deputy Minister Gina

CORONAVIRUS
PRETORIA, South Africa, July 10, 2020 --The devastating effects of the Covid-19 pandemic suffered by our economies compels us to swiftly formulate innovative solutions that will manage and minimise the negative effects of the virus on our respective economic, cultural investment, political and trade relations. This was said by the Deputy Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition, Ms Nomalungelo Gina, during a virtual Trade and Investment seminar which focused on investment opportunities available in South Africa and Zambia, which took place today. The seminar, hosted under the theme Developing Afrocentric solutions and forging partnership in response to COVID 19, was undertaken with the goal of mobilising South African and Zambian business communities to consider taking up investment...
Coronavirus – Africa: WHO calls for equitable access to future COVID-19 vaccines in Africa

Coronavirus – Africa: WHO calls for equitable access to future COVID-19 vaccines in Africa

CORONAVIRUS
BRAZZAVILLE, Congo (Republic of the), July 10, 2020 --The World Health Organization (WHO) in Africa joined immunization experts in urging the international community and countries in Africa to take concrete actions to ensure equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines, as researchers around the world race to find effective protection against the virus. “It is clear that as the international community comes together to develop safe and effective vaccines and therapeutics for COVID-19, equity must be a central focus of these efforts,” said Dr Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa. “Too often, African countries end up at the back of the queue for new technologies, including vaccines. These life-saving products must be available to everyone, not only those who can afford to pay.” ...
CORONAVIRUS: Africa begins collaboration for Covid-19 vaccine trial

CORONAVIRUS: Africa begins collaboration for Covid-19 vaccine trial

CORONAVIRUS
The African Union Commission has launched a consortium for Covid-19 vaccine clinical trials aimed at securing more than 10 trials as early as possible. The new consortium will be headed by the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention. It will bring together global vaccine developers, funders, and African organisations that facilitate clinical trials to ensure that sufficient data on effects of vaccine candidates on the African population is generated. This will enable vaccines to be confidently rolled out in Africa once approved. The AU Commission says rolling out a vaccine in Africa is key to “limiting transmission, preventing deaths and laying the foundation for socio-economic recovery that should bring Africa’s integration agenda back on track”. “Success in develop...
Coronavirus: South Africa and Zambia to strengthen Trade Relations

Coronavirus: South Africa and Zambia to strengthen Trade Relations

CORONAVIRUS
PRETORIA, South Africa, July 10, 2020 --The Deputy Minister of the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (the dtic), Ms Nomalungelo Gina will address a virtual Trade and Investment seminar with Zambia. The two day-session will take place tomorrow,  9 July 2020 to Friday, 10 July 2020 from 09:00 The theme for this year’s meeting is Developing Afrocentric solutions and forging partnership in response to COVID 19. Gina says that the seminar will focus on trade and investment opportunities available in both Zambia and South Africa. It will also provide a platform to also discuss strategic issues regarding Zambia’s investment plans to stimulate the country’s economic growth in the midst of COVID-19 pandemic. “South Africa’s main exports to Zambia include machinery and mechanic...
Coronavirus: Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) in collaboration with Africa Centre for Disease Control and Prevention continues to conduct Infection Prevention and Control (lPC) training across Nigeria

Coronavirus: Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) in collaboration with Africa Centre for Disease Control and Prevention continues to conduct Infection Prevention and Control (lPC) training across Nigeria

CORONAVIRUS, Nigeria
ABUJA, Nigeria, July 9, 2020/ -- As part of efforts to reduce the risk of COVID19 infection among health workers, NCDC in collaboration with Africa Centre for Disease Control and Prevention Continues to conduct lPC training across Nigeria The ongoing training in Katsina State is critical to reducing the risk of COVID19 transmission nationwide
Coronavirus – Africa: UNHCR and WFP warn refugees in Africa face hunger and malnutrition as COVID-19 worsens food shortages

Coronavirus – Africa: UNHCR and WFP warn refugees in Africa face hunger and malnutrition as COVID-19 worsens food shortages

AFRICA, CORONAVIRUS, HEALTH
ROME, Italy, July 9, 2020/ -- UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, and the World Food Programme (WFP) are warning that severe underfunding, conflict and disasters – as well as supply chain challenges, rising food prices and loss of income due to COVID19 - threaten to leave millions of refugees across Africa without food.“Millions of refugees throughout Africa are currently reliant on regular aid to meet their food needs,” said Filippo Grandi, UN High Commissioner for Refugees. “Around half are children, who may develop life-long difficulties if deprived of food at vital stages in their development.”Unless urgent action is taken to address the situation, levels of acute malnutrition, stunting and anemia are expected to rise. In refugee camps in Ethiopia, 62% of children are experiencing critical ...
Coronavirus – Uganda: The Minister of Health commissions Donations East African Community (EAC) Secretariat

Coronavirus – Uganda: The Minister of Health commissions Donations East African Community (EAC) Secretariat

CORONAVIRUS, UGANDA
KAMPALA, Uganda, July 9, 2020/ -- The Minister of Health, Dr Jane Ruth Aceng commissioned 2 mobile laboratories, 4 vehicles, laboratory test kits and other consumables donated by EAC Secretariat. This was an initiative by Govt of Germany and is a great boost to the COVID Response and other potential disease outbreaks