At least 50,296 people have died across Africa due to the novel coronavirus since February, the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) said on Wednesday.

The number of cases in the continent now stands at over two million, while more than 1.77 million patients have recovered, it said in its latest update.

Of the five geographical regions in the continent, Southern Africa is the hardest hit: 867,000 infections and 22,700 related deaths.

North Africa recorded 699,900 cases, East Africa 258,500, West Africa 202,600, and Central Africa 64,300.

The public health agency is marking the Africa Mask Week from Nov. 23-30 to “to encourage and increase consistent and proper mask-wearing across Africa.”

“The key to controlling the spread of COVID-19 in the absence of a vaccine is to adopt the age-old public health strategy of wearing a mask, washing your hands regularly and keeping a safe distance from others,” Africa CDC director John Nkengasong said.

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