Editorial

Editorial: Why should South Africa be punished for discovering Omicron?

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Editorial

Covid-19 has, no doubt, affected every facet of human lives. It has also imposed economic burdens on the human race, especially those of us living in the third world countries.  According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), countries in the world have so far pumped a whopping US$11 trillion into the various economies to keep them afloat.

But the bringing of the world economy to its knees is not the only problem Covid-19 has brought onto mankind. Millions of people have now lost their lives, and the figure is still counting. Here, in Ghana, over 1,209 people, as at November 17, 2021, are noted to have lost their lives to the deadly disease. It is one disease that does not have respect for the young, elderly, wealthy, or poverty-ridden people – it attacks and kills all manner of people.

Therefore, to help stem the tide and bring relief to the world, countries are working hard to detect the causes of the disease, and how to stop it from further spreading. This is what has led to the discovery of the various variants of Covid-19.

Fortunately for Africa, South Africa appears to be leading the research, and also seems to be detecting most of the new variants before they get to the attention of the Western countries.

Unfortunately, instead of patting her on the back for the good work she is doing to save mankind from total annihilation, South Africa and countries she shares borders with are rather being punished for detecting the new variant called Omicron. It is the contention of South Africa that the new variant was already wreaking havoc in the western world, but because they have modern laboratory equipment, they were the first to detect it.

But the western nations would not listen to that and have started barring airlines flying from South Africa to their respective countries. Some countries in Europe initiated the move, and now the almighty America has also joined in. The Chronicle is extremely worried over this development, because the western countries seem to be telling the world that nothing good comes from Africa. If this new variant had been detected in laboratories in Europe and America, they would have been proud in announcing to the world that they were first to detect it, but the opposite is the case with Africa.

The Chronicle, therefore, fully supports the public condemnation of the behaviour of the western world by both President Akufo-Addo and the visiting South African President, Matamela Cyril Ramaphosa. Despite always holding cups begging for alms, Africa still plays a key role in the world economy.

In our estimation, over 70% of the world’s natural resources come from Africa, and we should no more allow ourselves to be seen as a nonentity by these western countries, some of which plundered our resources for centuries in the name of colonisation.

It is time for us to say enough is enough. The punishment being meted out to South Africa and the whole of Africa, we insist, is unreasonable and must be stopped now!

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