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21 JAN 2021

ADDIS ABABA: The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases on the African continent reached 3,310,394 as of Wednesday, reported Xinhua news agency.

According to the dashboard of the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC), the death toll related to the pandemic in Africa stood at 80,970 as of Wednesday. A total of 2,757,548 people infected with COVID-19 have recovered across the continent so far, the agency disclosed.

The Southern Africa region is the most affected area in Africa in terms of the number of confirmed positive cases, followed by the Northern Africa region, according to the agency.

The most affected African countries in terms of the number of positive cases include South Africa, Morocco, Tunisia, Egypt, and Ethiopia, said the African Union (AU) Commission's specialised healthcare agency.

South Africa has reported the highest COVID-19-inflicted deaths in Africa, at 38,288 as of Wednesday, according to the Africa CDC.

Meanwhile, the Africa CDC on Tuesday announced the commencement of COVID-19 vaccines pre-order programme for all AU member countries.

The move by the Africa Medical Supplies Platform (AMSP), on behalf of the Africa CDC, came a week after the announcement by South African President and AU Chairperson Cyril Ramaphosa on Jan. 14 that the AU has secured a provisional 270 million COVID-19 vaccine doses for Africa through its COVID-19 African Vaccine Acquisition Task Team (AVATT).

The African Export-Import Bank (AfreximBank) will facilitate payments by providing advance procurement commitment guarantees of up to US$2 billion to the vaccine manufacturers on behalf of the members.

According to an official announcement, the provisional COVID-19 vaccines ordered by the AU are from Pfizer, Johnson and Johnson and AstraZeneca. -Bernama