Kenya, Ghana, and Gabon, on Friday, reported their first confirmed cases of infection with the new coronavirus.
In East Africa, Kenya reported one case on Friday, while in West Africa, Ghana reported two cases just as Gabon said it had logged one case.
This, however, raised the total number of African countries affected by the pandemic to 15.
According to Kenyan Health Minister, Mutahi Kagwe, the patient is a Kenyan citizen who had recently traveled to the US.
The Gabonese Health Ministry said that the infected person in Gabon was a national who had returned from a trip to Bordeaux, France on March 8.
The ministry added that Gabonese authorities were in the process of tracing all contacts the patient had since his arrival in the capital, Libreville.
According to the Ghanaian Health Ministry, both infected individuals returned from Norway and Turkey.
The Ghanaian Minister of Health, Kwaku Agyeman-Manu, said that both patients were currently being kept in isolation and were stable.
“I wish to assure all Ghanaians that the Government of Ghana together with all health partners will continue to work assiduously to ensure the situation is contained,” he said.
Health Minister Eteni Longondo of Congo reported the country’s second confirmed case of COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the new virus, involving a Cameroonian national who lives in the central African country, who travelled to France.
Congo has already had to contend with an outbreak of the Ebola haemorrhagic fever in its Eastern border region since mid-2018, though the last Ebola patient was discharged from a treatment centre in the city of Beni.
However, experts had considered Africa to be at high risk in relation to the coronavirus due the continent’s close economic ties with China where the disease outbreak originated in December 2019.
The continent’s outbreak has so far been limited compared with those in Asia or Europe.
Meanwhile, the World Health Organisation recorded 129 cases of COVID-19 in 12 of Africa’s 54 countries, with three casualties in Northern Africa, compared to more than 125,000 confirmed cases globally.