OMICRON: ALAKIJA SAYS TRAVEL BAN ON AFRICAN COUNTRIES DISCRIMINATORY, PUNITIVE, RACIST
Dr Ayoade Alakija, Co-Chairperson of the Africa Union (AU) African Vaccine Delivery Alliance, has called out some Countries over the latest travel bans imposed on African Countries, describing them as unnecessarily punitive, xenophobic and racist.
In a brief but no-holds-barred interview with the BBC World news, monitored by Eons intelligence on Sunday, Dr Alakija criticised Western Countries for denying access to travellers from African Countries.
The medical practitioner said the world should have been prepared for a new and “Inevitable” Covid-19 crisis instead of singling out African Countries for criticisms and blamed. She said there is no reason Africans and Africa should bear the brunt of the world's apparent lack of foresight.
The visibly upset doctor described the travel restrictions slammed on African Countries amid fears of the new Covid-19 variant, Omicron as discriminatory and xenophobic.
She said the travel restrictions and bans are simply political strategies and not borne out of medical grounds or based on science.
Recall that the first detected outbreak of this new variant was recorded in South Africa last week, based on test samples obtained between November 14th and 16th.
According to her, “Had the first Covid-19 Virus, the one first identified in Wuhan, China last year, originated in Africa, it is clear the world would have locked us away and thrown away the key."
“There would have been no urgency to develop vaccines because we would have been expendable. Africa would have become known as the continent of Covid-19. What is going on is inevitable and is a result of the world’s failure to vaccinate in an equitable, urgent and speedy manner", she stated.
She said Africa and Africans should not be made to suffer the medical mistakes of the whole world. She said: “We knew this was a crossroads it was going to bring us to. It was going to bring us to a variant. It was going to bring us to more dangerous variants. Why are we acting surprised?"
"Why are we locking away Africa when this virus is already on three Continents? Nobody is locking away Belgium and Israel. Why are we locking away Africa? It is wrong and it is time our African leaders to stand up and find their voices.”
Recall that South African travellers have been banned from travelling to some Countries like the UK, US, Canada, Seychelles, France, Japan, Singapore, Israel, India, Germany, Netherlands, Australia and the Philippines, among others.
Meanwhile, South African President, Cyril Ramaphosa also condemned the travel ban against his country and her neighbours over the new Corona virus variant, Omicron.
He said he was "Deeply dissapointed" by the actions which he described as unjustified. He called on the immediate lifting of the ban on Sunday.
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