Spike In COVID-19 Cases As Second Wave Hits DR Congo

There has been a marked increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in the Democratic Republic of Congo within the past two weeks following the arrival of the second wave of the virus in the country.

According to Dr Benoit Kebela Ilunga, member of the Technical Secretariat for the Fight Against the COVID-19 in DR Congo, “the second wave which has hit the country has not yet reached its peak and the latest figures during the last two weeks indicate that the virus is circulating intensely in the country”.

“What His Excellency, (the head of state) has said is for the people to adopt a responsible comportment because we are seeing through key indicators that we use when epidemics break out, that the number of cases proves the tendency that there is a spike,”Ilunga explained.

“When we look at the past weeks, we have the impression that we have not yet attained the peak but the figures we had during the past week are higher than what obtained during the first wave. That is to say the virus is circulating intensely within the populations.”

Talking of the non-resumption of classes in schools, Dr Ilunga called on parents to support the decision of the government to postpone the reopening of schools to a later date.

“I think the responsible decision would be that we wait again a little while. We should be prudent and let us see what the next two or three weeks would look like,” he said.

“We would take account of the incubation of the illness which we would evaluate if all goes well. With the festivities that have taken place, we would not be surprised that there would be several cases reported throughout the country.”

Meanwhile, Willy Bakonga, the Minister of Primary, Secondary and Technical Education, and  Dr. Jean Jacques, the Coordinator of the Technical Secretariat for the Fight Against COVID-19, on Monday  held a meeting with a view to defining the practical modalities for the reopening of schools.

School children in the DR Congo were pre-emptively sent on holidays on December 18, 2020 throughout the national territory in order to avoid the spread of the second wave of the pandemic.

Since the pandemic arrived at the Democratic Republic of Congo on March 10, 2020, the country has registered 18,153 COVID-19 cases.

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Chief Bisong Etahoben

Chief Bisong Etahoben is a Cameroonian investigative journalist and traditional ruler. He writes for international media and has participated in several transnational investigations. Etahoben won the first-ever Cameroon Investigative Journalist Award in 1992. He serves as a member of a number of international investigative journalism professional bodies including the Forum for African Investigative Reporters (FAIR). He is HumAngle's Francophone and Central Africa editor.

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