News & Analysis: Policy responses

COVID-19’s Impact on Educational Inequality in Lagos State, Nigeria

In Lagos State, Nigeria, school closures exacerbated previous inequalities in the educational system, as learning from home proved problematic for less fortunate children. And inequalities continue to impact educational access as Nigeria battles a second wave of COVID-19 infections.

via COVID-19 Africa Watch

COVID-19: Making the case for robust digital financial infrastructure

“We find that effective programs have three critical structural features of financial infrastructure: digital payment channels, the presence of a basic digital identification system with broad population coverage, and simple data on individuals and businesses that are tethered to the ID.”

via McKinsey Global Institute

Cyril Ramaphosa: “To fight COVID-19, we need a dose of honesty and trust”

“All of us need to be part of the national effort to educate the population about the vaccine and not allow the spread of rumours, fear and mistrust. False information and fake news put lives at risk.”

via Daily Maverick

Egypt Begins its COVID-19 Vaccination Campaign with China’s Sinopharm

“Egypt began the vaccination of medical staff on Sunday with the Chinese Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccine at a hospital in the northeastern province of Ismailia, according to a vaccination program by the Egyptian Health Ministry.”

via Africa News

Sierra Leone re-imposes lockdown on Freetown as COVID-19 cases spike

“The authorities of Sierra Leone have announced a new lockdown of the capital Freetown and a night curfew throughout the country to counter the ‘exponential’ increase of COVID-19 cases in the country.”

via Africa News

Malawi’s Second Wave: What Lessons from 2020 Can be Applied in 2021?

As a second wave inundates Malawi, public health officials and policymakers are asking, What lessons from Malawi’s mild 2020 experience should be applied in 2021?

via COVID-19 Africa Watch

Zimbabwe orders most civil servants to work from home

“Following death of two ministers from COVID-19, only 10% of government workers will be allowed to work at offices.”

via Anadolu Agency

‘COVID-19 has taught us to prioritise local production’ (Ghana)

“While the COVID-19 pandemic has brought devastating impacts on the economy and the health infrastructure, a key lesson the disease has taught is the need to prioritise local production and consumption, the Ashanti Region Minister, Simon Osei Mensah, has said.”

via BFT Online

Unequal vaccine access will return to haunt the rich

“As rich countries race to dispense COVID-19 vaccines, poorer nations have a fear of missing out. The UK has inoculated more than 4m people while South Africa, which has also been severely struck, has yet to administer a single non-trial dose.”

via Financial Times

Panic shopping as Kigali goes back into lockdown

“Food markets across Kigali city were on January 19 flocked by crowds of people – retailers and wholesalers – following an announcement that the capital was returning to total lockdown. The 15-day lockdown announced by a cabinet meeting on Monday is aimed at curbing the spread of COVID-19 in the city, which has been rampant in the past few days.”

via The New Times