DR Congo declares fourth wave of Covid-19

Monday December 13 2021
Health workers

Health workers perform a Covid-19 test at a private residence in Goma, DRC. Health authorities in the country say the rise in positive cases is a worrying trend. FILE PHOTO | ALEXIS HUGUET | AFP


The Democratic Republic of Congo has entered the fourth wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, Dr Jean-Jacques Muyembe, head of the technical secretariat of the response against the Covid-19 has announced.

DR Congo is experiencing a surge in coronavirus cases. According to the bulletin of the Technical Secretariat of the Multisectoral Committee on the response against the Covid-19 published on December 10, 2021, in DR Congo.

The country has recorded a total of 723 new positive cases within a span of 24 hours. This is a significant increase in infection rate, compared to October this year when the number of recorded cases were less than 50 per day.

The city of Kinshasa, with a population of over 12 million, is the epicentre of the disease.     

Health authorities in the country say the rise in positive cases is a worrying trend.

And although the new Omicron variant has not yet been detected in the country, Jean-Jacques Muyembe, who is also Director General of the National Institute for Biomedical Research, says "it is urgent to observe the barrier measures decreed by the national authorities. It is a question of respecting the barrier measures (wearing masks, observing physical distance, reducing the number of people in places of funerals or celebrations)".


Virologist Muyembe also insisted on the need to be vaccinated. "Vaccination will help in achieving herd immunity. Vaccination remains the best strategy to prevent hospitals from becoming overburdened again," he said.  

For now, vaccination in the DR Congo is a failure. According to figures from the Ministry of Health, since the start of vaccination in the country on April 19, 2021, only 0.1% of the population has been vaccinated. This means only 177,313 people have received the first dose and 60,099 have received their second dose.