In the News: Omicron is scary in Africa!

Audio 04:01

Healthcare worker receiving a vaccine, near Cape Town, South Africa, February 17, 2021. (Illustration) © © REUTERS - MIKE HUTCHING

By: Frédéric Couteau Follow

3 min


After the Delta variant, here is the Omicron variant, another Greek letter to designate a formidable new form of the coronavirus… which has appeared once again in South Africa.

So yes, “ 

Omicron is scary in Africa!


Exclaims WakatSéra

. Health fear but also economic fear… Indeed, points out the Burkinabé site, “

 African countries are struggling to recover from the economic damage caused by restrictions, such as the closure of air and land borders, markets, schools, places of worship, etc., and they also remain those where health centers lack everything. It is known and recognized, the diseases are in the south and the drugs in the north. (...) In any case, the situation is worrying,


WakatSéra, especially since experts in the fight against Covid-19 believe that the test statistics are not only truncated, but that the tests themselves only cover a derisory portion of the populations at risk.




wondered: "

 what will be the fate of African countries with porous borders?"

The countries of the continent, where by the game of corruption, travelers circulate in all directions, almost without control, the only sesame being hard cash exchanged surreptitiously or sometimes in full view of all, between travelers and agents Uniformed ?

How will the predominantly informal African economies react, driven by traders who live from day to day on the fruits of their transactions?


"Vaccinate us all!"


As for transcontinental travel, “ 

South Africa is increasingly isolated by the new Omicron variant





in Senegal.

 Many countries have suspended their flights and banned their territory from South Africans after the new strain of Covid-19 was identified.


Hence this call, somewhat desperate, from the South African daily

Sunday Times

 towards Western countries: " 

rather than making us endorse the unwanted cloak of pariahs: vaccinate us all, do not lock us up anymore!" 


Morocco locks itself in

Morocco, for its part, has decided to close its borders to several countries, in particular with South Africa, but also with France which is experiencing an epidemic resurgence. Suddenly, "

 storm over the winter tourist season with a rain of cancellations, 

" exclaims the




. “

 In the turmoil for a year and a half of health crisis, tourism operators in Morocco were hoping for a small recovery during the holiday season. But after the suspension of travel from and to several countries, it is the new hammer blow ... fatal for some.



who takes as an example this owner of a riad in Agadir: "

 all reservations from December to April, dates when the establishment was full, all these reservations were canceled, 

" she laments.

The vast majority of its clients are French.

I am obliged to lay off 6 people 

", she continues before regretting "

 the weak support measures taken by the authorities with the professionals to mitigate the economic consequences of the restrictions. 


Traditional medicine to the rescue

In terms of health, Africa still lacks vaccines. And many are turning to traditional medicines. This is what

Le Point Afrique


which takes the example of Ghana: a country which “

 has been hit hard by the current health crisis. Faced with the harmful consequences of the pandemic, the authorities have fully integrated the contribution of traditional medicine to their campaign,

the newspaper points out. 

This renewed confidence in traditional medicine has enabled its players to manufacture several remedies to strengthen the immune system. This, in order to contribute, in their own way, to the fight against this global pandemic. 


Indeed, no miracle: traditional medicines based on local plants do not prevent the onset of the disease, but they can strengthen the body's natural barriers and prevent contamination.

It's already that...


Receive all international news directly in your mailbox

I subscribe

Follow all the international news by downloading the RFI application


  • Newspaper