The United Nations has said it is “not even sure if there is any Covid-19 in Africa”, claims a graphic shared on Facebook in Kenya.
Text above the photo reads: “African leaders are using the present global health crisis to extract money from the world’s financial concerners. They are liars!”
Has the UN said it’s uncertain that the coronavirus pandemic has reached Africa? Or that African leaders are using the crisis to get money from global “financial concerners”?
Covid-19 in Africa recorded, discussed
The WHO’s 18 June report says the disease has been found in 47 countries in its “Africa” region. According to the report, this region has 194,539 cumulative confirmed cases of Covid-19, with 4,482 deaths. (Note: The WHO lists other countries in Africa, such as Djibouti, Sudan and Somalia, under its eastern Mediterranean grouping.)
The UN has also made a number of statements about Covid-19 in Africa, including the policy brief The Impact of Covid-19 in Africa, issued on 20 May.
The brief “calls for urgent international action to strengthen Africa’s health systems, maintain food supplies, support education, protect jobs, keep households and businesses afloat, and cushion the continent against lost income and export earnings”.
Africa’s ‘valuable lessons for the rest of the world’
In a 5 June article on the UN’s website, Guterres says: “African countries, like all countries, must have quick, equal and affordable access to any eventual vaccine and treatment for Covid-19. These must be considered global public goods.”
UN dismisses claim
The Covid-19 response across Africa has been boosted by donations of money and medical supplies from international donors.
But we found no statements from the UN that African leaders were using the pandemic to deceive donors.
UN spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric told Africa Check the graphic was “fake indeed”. – Grace Gichuhi
For publishers: what to do if your post is rated false
A fact-checker has rated your Facebook or Instagram post as “false”. What should you do? First, don't delete!
Click on our guide for the steps you should follow.
Africa Check teams up with Facebook
Africa Check is a partner in Facebook’s third-party fact-checking programme to help stop the spread of false information on social media.
The content we rate as “false” will be downgraded on Facebook and Instagram. This means fewer people will see it.
You can also help identify false information on Facebook. This guide explains how.
Fighting coronavirus misinformation
Africa Check is working with the CoronaVirusFacts/DatosCoronaVirus Alliance, a coalition of more than 100 fact-checkers fighting misinformation about the Covid-19 pandemic.
Learn more about the alliance here.
© Copyright Africa Check 2020. Read our republishing guidelines. You may reproduce this piece or content from it for the purpose of reporting and/or discussing news and current events. This is subject to: Crediting Africa Check in the byline, keeping all hyperlinks to the sources used and adding this sentence at the end of your publication: “This report was written by Africa Check, a non-partisan fact-checking organisation. View the original piece on their website", with a link back to this page.