Kenya extends curfew, South Africa returns to stricter lockdown after covid virus surge
London, May 31, 2021 (AltAfrica)-Kenya and South Africa have returned to stricter measures in the face of a sharp recent rise in COVID-19 cases inthe two African countries
While government in Nairobi, Kenya on Sunday extended the country’s nationwide curfew by a further 60 days to July 27, South Africa on same day announced a return to stricter lockdown measures in the face of a sharp rise in COVID-19 cases that indicate the virus is “surging again” in Africa’s worst-affected nation.
Kenya has been under some form of a curfew since March 2020.
Extension of the curfew comes as the country’s health ministry warned that there was a high possibility of a fourth wave as the numbers continue to surge.
“This Order shall apply during the hours of darkness between ten o’clock in the evening and four o’clock in the morning with effect from the 28 of May, 2021 and shall remain in effect for a period of sixty days thereof,” read a legal notice issued by Interior minister Fred Matiang’i.
Kenya’s COVID-19 caseload now at 170,647 after 162 new people tested positive for the virus on Sunday.
In South Africa, positive cases in the past seven days were 31% higher than the week before, and 66% higher than the week before that, Ramaphosa said in a live TV address. He said some parts of the country, including the commercial hub Johannesburg and the capital city Pretoria, were now in “a third wave.”
“We do not yet know how severe this wave will be or for how long it will last,” Ramaphosa said.
In response, Ramaphosa said that from Monday the nighttime curfew would be extended by an hour to start at 11 p.m. until 4 a.m. A maximum of 100 people would be allowed at indoor social gatherings and no more than 250 at an outdoors gathering. The number of people attending funerals will be limited to 100 people and after-funeral gatherings were banned completely, Ramaphosa said. Nonessential businesses must close by 10 p.m.
Meanwhile, the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Africa reached 4,823,795 as of Sunday noon, the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) said.
Over 4.8 million confirmed #COVID19 cases on the African continent – with more than 4.3 million recoveries & 130,000 deaths cumulatively.— WHO African Region (@WHOAFRO) May 30, 2021
View country figures & more with the WHO African Region COVID-19 Dashboard: https://t.co/FKav40Cbdd pic.twitter.com/x1Fa8REWEh
The Africa CDC said the death toll from the pandemic stands at 130,286 while 4,360,778 patients across the continent have recovered from the disease.
South Africa, Morocco, Tunisia, Ethiopia and Egypt are the countries with the most cases in the continent, according to the Africa CDC.
South Africa has recorded the highest COVID-19 cases in Africa at 1,659,070, while the two northern African countries — Morocco and Tunisia — reported 518,868 and 343,374 cases as of Sunday, respectively.
In terms of the caseload, southern Africa is the most affected region, followed by the northern and eastern parts of the continent, while central Africa is the least affected region in the continent, according to the Africa CDC.