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Half of Africans will run out of money during Covid-19 lockdown – report

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‘This report highlights the large information gaps on Covid-19 which exist in Africa and threaten response efforts.’

Cape Town – Almost 70% of people across Africa said

food and water would be a problem during a 14-day coronavirus

lockdown, while more than half would run out of money, a new report

found on Tuesday. 

Countries across Africa have quickly implemented policies to curb the

rapid spread of coronavirus infection, but they need to find a

balance between reducing transmission while preventing social and

economic disruption, according to a report conducted by global market

research firm Ipsos in collaboration with the Africa Centres for

Disease Control (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO) and other

partners.

“Covid-19 is not just a health crisis, it’s a political and social

crisis as well,” said Africa CDC director John Nkengasong.

The new findings will help countries make strategic decisions on

relaxing their lockdowns, given that the economic fallout from the

coronavirus pandemic will hit already vulnerable populations the

hardest, said WHO Africa regional director Matshidiso Moeti.

After interviewing almost 21 000 people from 28 cities in 20 African

countries on potential Covid-19 stay-at-home measures, the report

also stressed important information gaps in many nations across the

continent.

One third of respondents said they don’t have enough information

about the coronavirus, including on how it spreads and on how to

protect themselves.

Only 44% of those interviewed across Africa believe the virus

is a threat to them personally.

“This report highlights the large information gaps on Covid-19 which

exist in Africa and threaten response efforts,” said Moeti.

African nations faced particular hurdles during the pandemic due to

their large percentages of vulnerable populations, limited safety

nets and a critical scarcity of health-care workers, according to the

report.

“The most successful response to Covid-19 in Africa must consider

context and adaptability, and must be data-driven,” said Nkengasong.

dpa