COVID-19 in Zanzibar: First death recorded; cases rise to 19


On Wednesday, April 15, Zanzibar, the semi-autonomous region of Tanzania well known for its exotic beaches recorded its first coronavirus (COVID-19) death, and in the same time, more people infected by the novel virus increase to 18 as 6 more people test positive for COVID-19.

According to the island’s health minister Hamad Rashid Mohammed, the deceased patient was a 63-year-old male, who passed away on Saturday at his home and was buried on the same day.

Further, the minister noted that the six new cases included five men and a woman aged between 33 and 63 are all from Zanzibar and did not have any recent travel history.

The minister also announced that two patients who were receiving treatment at designated hospitals on the Isles have been discharged after completing their treatment.

However, the new trend of coronavirus infections brings a different dimension in the fight against the pandemic which was initially thought to be from the epicentre countries such as Italy, Spain, France and the UK.

In the same context, 6 days ago, the Tanzania health minister Ummy Mwalimu gave a warning that Tanzania could be dealing with internal transmissions after struggling with imported cases in the beginning.

Meanwhile, in Tanzania health authorities, announced that 29  new people tested positive for the coronavirus, which brings the total number of those who have tested positive in Tanzania to 88.

The revolutionary government of Zanzibar banned all tourist flights from entering the isles as soon the pandemic took a toll in the archipelago.

The global health crisis has left visible marks on the world-known island economy, particularly the tourism industry, which accounts for about 27 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

READ: Coronavirus Africa update: Zanzibar permits tourism, under strict conditions

Padili Mikomangwa is an environmentalist based in Tanzania. . He is passionate about helping communities be aware of critical issues cutting across, environmental economics and natural resources management. He holds a bachelors degree in Geography and Environmental Studies from University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

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