Tanzanian Health Minister Ummy Mwalimu speaking about a Covid-19 case at a press conference on 16 March, 2020 © Hisani ya Michuzi blog
Tanzania on Tuesday recorded its first death from coronavirus, a 49-year-old man who had underlying health issues, the health ministry said.
The East African nation has reported cases since March 16. One person has so far recovered.
“I regret to announce the first death of coronavirus patient early this morning. The 49-year old man had other health complications,” Health Minister Ummy Mwalimu said in a statement, without giving details.
Tanzania has already shut all schools and universities in a bid to curb the disease, and from Tuesday parliament cut working hours and limited the number of MPs allowed in the debating chamber.
However, President John Magufuli has played down the seriousness of the disease.
“This is time to build our faith and continue praying to God and not depending on face masks. Don’t stop going to churches and mosques for prayers. I’m sure this is just a change of wind and it will go like others have gone,” Magufuli said at a church in Dodoma earlier this month.
There are too many threats being spread about corona but this is a small disease and we will beat it in the name of Jesus. I also ask Tanzanians to continue working hard,” he added.
72 deaths and 210 recoveries
The Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention said Thursday that 46 out of 54 African countries have reported cases of Covid-19, with 72 deaths and 210 recoveries throughout the continent.ADVERTISING
The breakdown of cases per region shows that North Africa has been the hardest hit, with 1,159 cases, while South Africa in the southern region has individually the highest number of cases, at 709.