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Sudan’s COVID-19 response chief calls on media to 'quell false vaccine rumours'

July 19 - 2021 KHARTOUM
Cartoon by Omar Dafallah (RD)
Cartoon by Omar Dafallah (RD)

Member of Sudan’s Sovereignty Council and alternate Chair of the Supreme Committee for Health Emergencies, Prof Siddig Tawir, says that there has been “deliberate misinformation spread by some circles,” which he did not name, from the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. He urged media and reporters to continue the struggle against misleading rumours about COVID vaccines.

Addressing the inaugural session of the Workshop on the Role of Media and Multimedia in Combating Misinformation and Rumours concerning COVID-19 a in Khartoum last week, Tawir pointed out that “the culture of Sudanese communities often contradicts the state’s efforts to curb the spread of the virus”. He called for more research in anticipation of the continuation of the pandemic and the emergence of new variants.

He affirmed the Supreme Committee's support for all coordination efforts and companies that facilitate combating rumours and limiting the spread of the virus.

In its latest figures, the Federal Ministry of Health announced the registration of 49 new cases of COVID-19 virus, and two deaths. The ministry said in its epidemiological report that the Red Sea state recorded two deaths and 17 new cases of COVID-19 during the period. It clarified that the cumulative number of cases has reached 37,138 cases, with 2,776 deaths.

This is an increase on the Federal Ministry of Health figures announced In its epidemiological reports for the week from 5 to 11 July, reporting 156 new cases ofCOVID-19, 105 of them in the Red Sea state with two deaths. The report indicated that the cumulative number of cases rose to 36,986, and the deaths were 2,774.

The World Health Organization has made a new appeal for vaccines for Africa, saying a “fast-surging” third wave of Covid-19 is outpacing efforts to protect populations, “leaving more and more dangerously exposed”, according to a report in The Guardian.

The Guardian also reports that according to a report by US/UK NGO the Center for Countering Digital Hate (CCDH), the majority of Covid misinformation worldwide came from 12 online personalities they dubbed the “disinformation dozen”, who have a combined following of 59 million people across multiple social media platforms.

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