ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia

Africa has been witnessing an overall drop in the rate of infections from the novel coronavirus, says the director of the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

John Nkengasong made an announcement on the infection rate during a weekly media briefing conducted virtually every Thursday.

Africa recorded a 14% drop in the number of new infections across the continent over the past one week compared to the previous, he said.

However East Africa region recorded a 2.4% increase in infections over the reported period, while North Africa registered a 7.5% rise.

The continent has so far recorded 1,267,656 cases, 30,294 deaths, and 1,009,824 recoveries, according to the daily update by the Africa CDC.

While declaring an overall fall in rate of infections, Nkengasong said: “We are not declaring victory. We have a long way to go to beat the virus in Africa.”

The continent also registered 80% recovery rate, as a positive development.

South Africa, Egypt, Nigeria, Morocco, and Ethiopia account for 70% of the overall infections in the continent, with South Africa alone registering 50% of cases, Nkengasong noted,

Two weeks ago, the Africa CDC submitted a Vaccine Development Strategy to the heads of state and government via South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa, the current head of the African Union.

A strategy focusing on providing access for the African people to vaccines was adopted by the continental decision body.

But Nkengasong said it would be difficult to say when Africa would be able to develop vaccines against the COVID-19 disease.

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