The death toll from the COVID-19 pandemic across Africa is heading is gone past the 1,000 mark as of April 18, 2020. The casualties cut across age groups. From the death of a 6 year-old in Kenya, older patients in most instances and persons in the youth bracket.
While each death is reported with a sombre mood and with condolences to affected families, some of the casualties have united a country in grief, in other cases united the continent and people beyond Africa’s borders.
From top politicians – former presidents, prime ministers and lawmakers, to entertainment icons and top sportsmen, the virus has left in its wake prominent casualties who could hardly get the send-off they would have been accorded in “normal times.”
This article briefly profiles as many casualties as possible:
July 10: Top female medic dies in Yaounde
Cameroon’s medical and football fraternities recorded a big loss late last week when Dr. Anastasie Akamba, head of a district hospital in the capital Yaounde died from COVID-19. The state broadcaster, CRTV, said she had been in respiratory distress for days before succumbing.
She was also the doctor for the Under-17 national women’s football team. The football federation confirmed the death last Friday, July 10. FECAFOOT in their condolence message described her as a “servant of women’s football.”
“Deeply touched by this other big loss that we are registering within the medical professional, I would like to express all my compassion to the bereaved families. We will continue to improve the protection of health personnel throughout this crisis,” Health Minister Manaouda Malachie tweeted on Sunday.
The issue of exposed medics in the frontline of the virus fight continues to beset Africa’s already bogged down health system. Ghana, Nigeria and recently Kenya are among countries that have lost heath personnel to the virus.
Most health workers have been given tax rebates by governments whiles elsewhere they have protested against lack of personal protective equipment and for more risk allowances, case in point Zimbabwe, Nigeria and Malawi.
Cameroon’s Case load as of July 13, 2020
Confirmed cases = 15,173
Active cases = 2,882
Recoveries = 11,928
Number of deaths = 359
John Hopkins University stats
July 9: South African queen dies
A prominent traditional ruler in South Africa has died after contracting coronavirus, the state-owned SABC has reported. The 56-year-old monarch died on July 8 from COVID-19 complications.
Queen Noloyiso, widow of the late King Maxhobha Sandile, passed away on 8 July 2020 following a short illness, the government said.
Reacting to the news today, president Cyril Ramaphosa expressed his sadness and extended condolences at the passing of Regent of the Royal House of the amaRharhabe, Queen Noloyiso Sandile.
“We join the Great Place of Mngqesha and amaRharhabe in mourning her passing; at the same time we pay tribute to her for her deep and unwavering commitment to the upliftment of her people and to her country. May her soul rest in pe