With several nations all across the globe falling prey to the coronavirus infection, Burundi, one of the handfuls of countries in Africa that appears to have acted as a bulletproof jacket against the pandemic so far, registered its first two cases on March 31, the health officials reportedly announced. According to the reports, Health Minister Thadee Ndikumana said that the patients are Burundians, 56 and 42, who had arrived from Rwanda and the United Arab Emirates via Rwanda.
Ndikumana also reportedly announced that the two patients were kept under complete quarantine at an isolation hotel in Bujumbura and also urged the people to maintain hygiene and social distancing measures to prevent the spread of the virus which was not on the map of Burundi some time back. Certain neighboring countries, including the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, and Tanzania have also reported a growing number of COVID-19 pandemic cases.
According to reports, certain strict measures have been adopted by the government to curb the disease such as the suspension of international flights and placing handwashing stations at the entrances to banks and restaurants in Bujumbura. However, the doctors in the country have expressed their concerns over the growing number of cases and casualties across the world.
The Burundi government on March 31 reportedly received criticism from the Human Rights Watch for its careless approach in dealing with the coronavirus pandemic and also accused them of having a denial and deflection approach to crisis management.
Commenting on the same, Lewis Mudge, the watchdog’s Central Africa director reportedly said in a statement that the country's denial and deflection approach to crisis management ignores all the painful lessons learned elsewhere about the outbreak.
Adding he said that authorities should be transparent and work with their international partners for the immediate and prompt delivery of aid and protect those most vulnerable.
(Image credit: AP)