There are signs of hope on the African continent as cases of COVID-19 begin to fall in some worst hit countries.
The continent-wide daily average was 10,300 last week, down from 11,000 the week before.
Africa has recorded 1,147,369 cases, more than half of which are in South Africa, and about 26,000 deaths.
The Director of the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention Dr John Nkengasong has described the development as a “sign of hope”.
“We are beginning to bend the curve slowly, but it’s very, very early .We are dealing with a very delicate virus that spreads rapidly. We take this news with cautious optimism,” he said.
As Member States begin to ease lockdowns & reopen, it is critical to prepare #Africa for the next phase of the #COVID19 pandemic. Saving Lives, Economies, and Livelihoods aims to harmonize strategies to protect borders and travel, economies, livelihoods and schools.
— John Nkengasong (@JNkengasong) August 20, 2020
Dr John Nkengasong cautioned African countries against complacency in order not to erode the gains made in the fight against the COVID-19.
“We really want our population not to show what we call ‘prevention fatigue’, where we slow down on the measures that we are putting in place.”
He urged people to continue their efforts to prevent the spread of the virus, specifically saying that people needed to continue to wear masks, to maintain social distance and that more testing is needed.
The WHO attributes the overall drop in newly confirmed cases in Africa to the decreasing number of positive cases in some worst hit countries including South Africa.