Ahmed Ogwell, acting director of the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has warned that a more transmissible new COVID-19 variant could emerge in Africa as Five African countries reported the highest numbers of newly confirmed COVID-19 cases over the last week.
“The increase is a clear sign that there is (a) high possibility a new variant, which is more transmissible, is to appear,” Ogwell said during a weekly briefing Thursday (May 19).
According to figures from the Africa CDC, the African continent has seen a 36 percent average increase of new COVID-19 cases over the past four weeks, with Central and Eastern Africa regions reporting increasing new COVID-19 cases by 113 and 54 percent, respectively.
The Africa CDC, the specialized healthcare agency of the African Union, called for increased testing to locate which part of the continent the new variant would be appearing in.
He also called for an enhanced vaccination rollout to sustainably address low vaccination service against the pandemic across the continent. “We are distinctively seeing increasing deaths due to the pandemic as cases are surging over the last four weeks.”