By Effie Mphande
The World Health Organisation -WHO- says it is deploying more experts to some of the Covid-19 worst affected African countries, which include Zambia and Uganda.
W.H.O. Regional Director for Africa Matshidiso Moeti says the organisation is also supporting South Africa-based regional laboratories to monitor variants of concern.
Dr. Moeti says the Delta variant, which was first identified in India, has been detected in 14 African countries.
She says the WHO is boosting innovative technological support to other laboratories in the region, which do not have sequencing capacities to better monitor the evolution of the virus.
Dr. Moeti says the WHO is also aiming for an eight to ten-fold increase in the samples sequenced each month in Southern African countries in the next six months.
The regional Director says Africa is facing a fast-surging third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, with cases spreading more rapidly and projected to soon overtake the peak of the second wave the continent witnessed at the start of 2021.
Dr. Moeti says the ongoing surge is set to surpass the second wave by early July.
She has attributed the increase in the number of Covid-19 cases to poor observance of public health measures, increased social interaction and movement and the spread of variants.
This is contained in a press statement released to ZNBC News by WHO Regional Office for Africa Communications Officer, Collins Boakye-Agyemang.
A survey conducted by WHO in 45 African countries has revealed that their borders are open for air travel and only Mauritius will require proof of vaccination for international travellers from 15 July 2021.
Most countries do not give quarantine exemptions for travelers who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and require a negative COVID-19 test.