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Opinions of Monday, 29 November 2021

Columnist: Issifu Sulemana

Africa must stand up to the world's arbitrary response on omicron variant

There is dishonesty in the reporting of covid-19 discoveries in poorer countries There is dishonesty in the reporting of covid-19 discoveries in poorer countries

African leaders must not sit down and allow the world to lock us out because of the discovery of the Omicron variant of covid-19.

What is happening now gives an insight as to what the world would have done to us if covid-19 was discovered in Africa first. The racist, xenophobic, and arbitrary response from the world against Africa for honestly reporting the outcome of its excellent science, is condemnable.

Per this knee-jerk reaction from the world, EU and America, they're setting a dangerous path of dishonesty in reporting covid-19 situations/discoveries by, especially poorer and weaker countries. Henceforth, poorer countries would be forced to shelve information on covid to avoid being clubbed or victimized through unscientific restrictions.

It was clear from the word go, that, acting selfish was dangerous for all. Yet, the rich continents acted selfishly through hoarding and muscular jostling for vaccines, out crowding the poor countries.

The end result is the multiplicity of mutations and variations of virulent strains of the virus. And when, South Africa, through superior science reports honestly, you club her. This is nothing more than gangsterism.

Now, what ought to be noted is that the mere discovery of the Omicron variant in South Africa or Africa is not evidence of its origination from there. No lazy country with quark science can discover a variant of the virus. Rather, only excellent science could do that. By a well-founded extrapolation, what is most probable is that the strain could have been existing in many countries or parts of the world until we were lucky to be told by Africa. How then do you scapegoat South Africa?

China, the root cause of this whole mess, didn't receive this highhanded response. Instead, they were pampered and supported. Why should Africa, a victim of China's recklessness bolstered by self-serving countries, carry the cross.

The attempt to continuously confine Africa to the dustbins of international relations must be forcefully rejected by our leaders. I want to hear the voice of the AU in a thunderous rage on this disrespectful and racist behavior of the world.