Photo by STRINGER/AFP via Getty Images.

Tanzanian Government Declares Country Free of COVID-19.

Tanzanian Government Declares Country Free of COVID-19

While WHO has expressed concern over Tanzania's overall COVID-19 response, President John Magufuli says the country is now free from the pandemic due to 'citizens' prayers'.

Tanzanian President John Magufuli recently declared that the country is now free of the coronavirus, according to reports by the BBC. The move is yet another controversial one in what the World Health Organisation (WHO) has since described as a "concerning" response by the government to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In his announcement, President Magufuli said, "I want to thank Tanzanians of all faiths." He went on to add, "We have been praying and fasting for God to save us from the pandemic that has afflicted our country and the world. But God has answered us. I believe, and I'm certain that many Tanzanians believe, that the corona disease has been eliminated by God."

However, major opposition parties have condemned the ruling government and accused it of being "reckless" with the lives of citizens. Zitto Kabwe, leader of the Alliance for Change and Transparency, says, "The government say there are no patients in the hospitals but we know of three hospitals in Dar es Salaam where the ICU beds are all completely full."

For close to a month, authorities have not provided updated statistics of coronavirus spread in the country despite requests for the data by WHO. This is in stark contrast to other African countries such as South Africa and Nigeria which have consistently released new COVID-19 figures daily. As of April 29th, there were reportedly 480 confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Tanzania with 16 deaths. Not much else is known beyond that date.

Additionally, Tanzania is one of the few African countries which ordered a large consignment of Madagascar's COVID-Organics herbal tonic which has been touted as a "cure". The tonic has however not undergone any proper scientific testing.

Spotlight
Photo Credit: Getty Images

Global Citizen x OkayAfrica: The Impact of Conflict on Children

An estimated 1.4 million children have been hit by schools closing in the Tigray region of Ethiopia amid conflict and crisis. Here's how that's impacting Ethiopia's children.

In times of conflict and war, school-aged children could have their futures defined by whether or not they can access education amid ongoing violence.

Ethiopia's northern region of Tigray is in the midst of a war that has impacted millions of lives and affected neighboring regions, Amhara and Afar. The war — which has forced citizens to flee, has tipped the region into famine, and has barricaded humanitarian aid from reaching the most vulnerable — has now been going on for about 11 months.

As the beginning of the school season draws nearer, safely reopening schools, making education accessible, and protecting children from the impacts of violence in the affected regions is a priority for aid agencies.

"As schools prepare to reopen in early October in most parts of the country, in Tigray and the bordering regions of Afar and Amhara, where the conflict has expanded, education remains at a standstill," Director of Education Cannot Wait, Yasmine Sherif, told Global Citizen.

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

popular.

How Beauty Boy, Enioluwa Adeoluwa, Is Shattering the Expectations of Masculinity In Nigeria

Affectionately known as Lipgloss Boy, Enioluwa has become one of the most popular influencers in Nigeria — and he's done so without conforming to the notions of masculinity or imposed limitations on what a man should be able to do.