Chairperson of the African Union (AU) Commission Moussa Faki Mahamat on Friday called on the African continent to ensure economic recovery from the brunt of COVID-19 pandemic as the New Year begins.
“As we mark the end of the year 2020, we also mark the end of one of the most extraordinary and challenging years in living memory,” the chairperson of the 55-member pan-African bloc said in a statement.
Mahamat warned that “the challenging task of protecting our health and livelihoods, while ensuring recovery of our economies, still lies ahead as we begin a new year.”
According to Mahamat, the AU’s continental response initiative, as part of the bloc’s aspiration in supporting member states with preparedness, response and recovery from public health emergencies, kicked in early and fast by the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC).
Mahamat’s remarks came as the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the African continent reached 2,759,313 as of Friday, the Africa CDC said.
The continental disease control and prevention agency said in a statement that the death toll from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has reached 65,480 as of Friday evening.
The public health agency of the AU also said that a total of 2,289,156 people infected with COVID-19 have recovered across the continent so far.