The recent discovery in South Africa of a new Covid variant called Omicron immediately sparked panicked reactions in some European countries in particular, including the United Kingdom and the Netherlands, which quickly banned flights to and from South Africa, unfounded fear of that. new variable. “Western” reactions, in turn, have drawn anger and anger from South Africa, among others, President Matamila Cyril Ramaphosa, Dr Ayoad Olatunboson-Alakija, co-chair of the African Vaccine Delivery Alliance and an African Union microbiologist. past.
‘Absolutely unjustified entry ban’
President Cyril Ramaphosa Urging countries to lift the “completely unjustified” and unsupported entry ban on countries in South Africa. Speaking to the nation on Sunday, President Cyril Ramaphosa called the travel ban “unjustified and unaware of science.”
These restrictions are unjustified and unfairly discriminate against our country and our sister nations in South Africa. Travel bans have not been scientifically proven and will not be effective in preventing the spread of this species. Whatever the travel ban will do will further damage the economies of the affected countries and undermine their ability to respond to and recover from the pandemic.”
It has been approved by the World Health Organization (WHO). He praised the speed and transparency of South Africa. The travel restrictions imposed on the country can only do so much to stop the spread of Omicron, and “put a heavy burden on the population,” said Matshidiso Moeti, the WHO’s director for Africa.
“We are the victims of our success”
Microbiologist Shabbir MadiA professor of vaccinology at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg told Al Jazeera Arabic news channel that it would be naive for developed countries to think they could stop the spread of Omicron with a general no-fly zone over countries in the United States. South Africa.
“The virus has already made its way into the community, for individuals who have not traveled or come into contact with anyone from South Africa.” Madi believes that South Africa is wrongly responsible for the new alternative. “The fact that it was detected here does not make it a South African version. It was only discovered here. In South Africa we have one of the best Covid research facilities in the world based on our experience treating HIV and TB. We have been at the forefront for some time, so we are Victims of our success.
Mild complaints and treatment at home
Angelique Coetzee, the physician and president of the South African Medical Association who first noticed the variant, the new variant is no cause for blind panic. In early November, patients with unusual symptoms of Covid came to her clinic. These patients were very tired, but no one complained of a loss of taste or smell. “Their symptoms were very different and milder than those I treated before.” All patients can be treated at home and recover.
Doctor. Ayoade Olatunbosun-Alakija She received a lot of praise online after she also rejected the travel ban. In a scathing interview with the BBC last weekend, Olatonbuson-Alakija criticized Western countries for refusing entry to travelers from African countries, including South Africa. She said the world should have been prepared for a new and “inevitable” Covid-19 crisis.
“If the first Covid-19 virus, the first virus identified in China last year, had originated in Africa, then obviously the world would have locked us up and thrown the key away,” she said. “There was no urgent need to develop vaccines because we were going to be consumed. Africa would have been known as the continent of Covid-19. What happens is inevitable and as a result of the world failing to vaccinate in a fair, urgent and rapid way.” “And what we know now is what we don’t know.”
She also said the travel bans are based on politics, not science, and that decisions are not acceptable.
“We knew this was a crossroads where it would take us. It would take us to the alternative. It would take us to more dangerous variants. Why are we acting so surprised? Why lock up Africa when this virus is already on three continents?”
Nobody locks up Belgium and Israel. Why are we holding Africa? It is a mistake and it is time for our African leaders to stand up and speak frankly.”
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