If there is one big take away from covid19 crisis , its the clarity of how much Africa is being taken for granted and how we seat on the world stage.
Many researchers across the world have continued the call for Africa to be used as a testing ground for Covid19 vaccines.
Remember the blow back the French doctors received, (they compared Africa to prostitutes with HIV when rationalizing the need to test vaccines on African soil) these foreign researchers still have not backed down. UK Researchers are considering testing their Coronavirus vaccine on people in Kenya.
The UK has 148,377 Coronavirus cases with 20,319 deaths. Kenya on the other hand, has 343 cases with 14 deaths.(at the time of writing)Yet they consider Africa a testing ground for their test Kits
Its time for Africa to look inwards and create its own solutions fortunately, most of us should have heard the good news from Senegal and Madagascar
Pasteur Institute, a research laboratory in Dakar Senegal has used its AIDS and Ebola experience to develop a $1 COVID-19 testing kit that will not just take just 10 minutes to do a test but also sell at a cost price of one US Dollar
The brains behind this innovation is Dr Amadou Sall, he lead the innovation Working in collaboration with a Biotech company in the UK & researchers funded by the American NIH.
He was previously developing a Dengue Fever Kit, but they turned their attention to the Coronavirus in January. The kit works by taking saliva or blood swap, put it in a small machine that looks like a suit case and 10 minutes later you know whether or not you are infected
Senegalese engineers are also using 3D printing to make ventilators ,
We have not heard of any African country ordering test kits from Senegal- Nigeria’s NCDC director spoke about increasing test in Nigeria, but nothing has been said about contacting Senegal
In Nigeria, many young innovators have developed ventilators but unfortunately they have been largely ignored.
Madagascar’s President Andry Rajoelina has approved a medicine called Covid organics -curative & preventive against #Covid19
Madagascar used “artemisia annua” also known as sweet wormwood for Covid cure. This herbal plant was mixed with other scientific resources to create his cure which has been approved for use across Madagascar.
There are so many other positive stories coming from Africa, in Ogun State there are drive through sample collection centers, in Ghana is transporting Coronavirus test samples with drones
But will Madagascar and Senegal that has made bold moves get the support from fellow African leaders.
Well its political, WHO gives millions in funding to many African countries so they have no choice than to toe the line and path of the WHO organisation, this includes not giving legitimacy or endorsement to a cure that has not been approved by WHO.
So far just 3 African leaders out of 54 has contacted Madagascar’s President Andry Rajoelina
DR Congo’s President Felix Tshisekedi has congratulated Madagascar’s president
Senegalese President, Macky Sall.
Guinea Bissau’s President Umaro Embalo
No word from 51 Africa countries.
At this moment its not scientifically correct to call Madagascar’s Covid organics a cure, or determine the accuracy of test kits from Senegal, but they both present an option that could work perfectly or be improved.
If Africa can coordinate efforts and work together, its possible to improve and compliment efforts from other African countries. if we can risk faulty test kits and equipments from China, why cant we buy a few test kits from our neighbor to see if it works?
Africa is in need of strong leadership, infact its time for African Health Organisation- AHO