MELINDA Gates has warned that the bodies of African cities will soon be littered with the corpses of coronavirus victims soon unless governments across the continent take urgent action to combat the spread of the pandemic.
Despite the fact that Africa has avoided the worst effects of the virus, numerous experts have warned that the continent may soon face a coronavirus crisis. Across Africa as a whole, there are only 14,497 confirmed cases of coronavirus, of which there have been 788 deaths, which is minor compared the UK for instance where there have been 84,279 cases resulting in 10,612 deaths, or the US where there have been 560,433 cases resulting in 22,115 fatalities.
Most African nations have introduced a range of measures to combat the spread of the pandemic, including lockdowns and the opening of isolation centres. This has been effective in halting the spread of the virus but has led to widespread economic hardship, putting governments under pressure to lift the restrictions.
However, echoing fears that Africa may soon become the next epicentre of the virus, Mrs Gates, the wife of billionaire businessman and Microsoft founder, Bill Gates, said her heart was in Africa. She added that she is worried that the continent might not be able to handle the devastating effect of the virus.
Mrs Gates said: “It’s going to be horrible in the developing world. Part of the reasons you are seeing the case numbers still do not look very bad, is because they don’t have access to many tests.
“Look at what is happening in Ecuador, they are putting bodies out on the streets. You are going to see that in countries in Africa.”
She added that she fears things will get worst for Africa once cases peak due to poor health care systems and a lack of humanitarian support in the continent. Mrs Gates pointed out that her worst fear was when she saw what China had to do to isolate enormous part of its population.
Mrs Gates said: “I have been in townships all over Africa and slums. When we talk of physical distancing and hand-washing, if you live in slums who can’t physically distance, you have to go out and get your meals. You don’t have clean water to wash your hands.”