African leaders, arise

Africa is yet to experience a full blown outbreak, but every day we record new cases of corona virus. It would be like a lightning in the midst of thunder if nothing is done to save Africans against this global pandemic. The pandemic has crashed economies and broken health-care systems, filled hospitals and emptied public spaces. It has separated people from their workplaces and their friends.

Imagine a continent  that is the  world’s second largest and second-most populous after Asia, that covers six per cent of earth’s total surface area and 20 per cent of its land area with 1.3 billion people as of 2018 being wiped off by  this deadly disease.

This is a “wake up” call to all African presidents. In times past, Africans were known to handle situations in a tender manner, but in this case of COVID-19 that has the tendency of sweeping off everything we have labored and worked  for over the years, it should be treated with resilience.

Although Africa’s confirmed cases of the infection are currently low, this should not be a reason for African presidents to want to embrace their comfort zone. Health experts have warned that strained public health systems in Africa could become quickly overwhelmed if the virus takes hold, especially in overcrowded urban areas. We all know African presidents are doing all humanly possible to curb the situation, but they have to be more aggressive in enforcing the measures aimed at containing the spread of the virus.

All Africa needs to combat the situation is  team work. If all African leaders come together, in carrying out a campaign that can help eliminate the disease from Africa, we would have a reduced case here.

I call on every African leader to team up and create a campaign that can help kick out COVID-19 because this pandemic has imprinted itself upon Africans psyche.

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They should call for a massive rollout of Covid-19 tests across all African countries. This would help in identifying those that have the disease from those that are free from it so that proper measures can be effectively taken.

If Africans can adhere to social distancing, if enough testing can be rolled out, and if adequate masks can be produced, there is a chance that Africa can still avert the worst predictions about COVID-19, and at least temporarily bring the pandemic under control.

Tunde Eso,



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