(5 mins read)

Since the COVID-19 pandemic struck the world, Tanzania‘s government has insisted the country was free from Covid-19 and in light of vaccinations being distributed globally. Tanzanian governments state that they have so no plans for vaccinations.

Tanzania currently states that their number of COVID related deaths is 20. Whilst cases of COVID in Africa are some of the lowest in the world, many critics suspect that the government is hiding the true number of COVID-related deaths.

Tanzania’s government has not published data on the coronavirus cases for months, the country is “Covid-19-free”.There are little testing and no plans for a vaccination program in the country.

The British government has banned all travellers arriving from Tanzania, while the US has warned against going to the country because of coronavirus.

Since June last year, when President John Magufuli declared the country “Covid-19 free”, he, along with other top government officials, have challenged whether testing actually works.

Mr. Magufuli has also warned that Covid-19 vaccines could be harmful and has instead been urging Tanzanians to use steam inhalation and herbal medicines, neither of which have been approved by the World Health Organization (WHO) as treatments.

President Magufuli stated that “Tanzanians should not be used as guinea pigs” and that “If the white man was able to come up with vaccinations, he should have found a vaccination for Aids, cancer, and TB by now”.

 

Tanzanians were urged to improve their personal hygiene, wash their hands with running water and soap, use handkerchiefs, herbal steam, exercise, eat nutritious food, drink plenty of water, and use natural remedies from the land by Tanzanian Bishop, Dr. Gwajima. But this was not because the virus was in the country. Tanzanians had to be prepared because the virus was “ravaging” neighbouring countries, she said.

Some medics are skeptical about the government’s stance.

“Covid is not finished, Covid is still here. Let’s not be reckless, we need to protect ourselves, wash our hands with soap and water. We also have to go back to wearing masks,” said Bishop of Dar es Salaam Yuda Thadei Ruwaichi.

The secretary of the Tanzania Episcopal Conference, Father Charles Kitima, told BBC Swahili that the church had noticed a rise in funeral services in urban areas.

This sense of carrying on as if nothing had happened is what the government has been encouraging.

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    Adeola is a world traveller and influencer focusing her area of travel on the continent of Africa, being her passion at her core. The aspiring writer wants to use her story to educate those about what different African countries are really like through the gaze of a first-generation British Nigerian. Her solo travels through the continent aim to inspire others giving not only her stories but useful facts about each country.

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