Africa

Covid-19: WHO meets African traditional medicine experts for cure


Officials of the World Health organization (WHO) met with 70 traditional medicine experts in Africa in a bid to develop a cure for Covid-19.

WHO African Region made this known via its Twitter handle on Tuesday.

The health organisation said an agreement was reached with the herbal medicine experts on clinical trials of their remedies.

This meeting is coming after Madagascar said it found an herbal remedy capable of curing the disease.

@WHOAFRO tweeted, “70 traditional medicine experts from countries across #Africa held a virtual meeting with @WHO on the role of traditional medicine in the #COVID19 response.

“They unanimously agreed that clinical trials must be conducted for all medicines in the Region, without exception.”

Earlier, Madagascar President Andry Rajoelina criticised WHO and other international organisations for allegedly scorning local “remedy” for COVID-19.

“If it wasn’t Madagascar, and if it was a European country that had actually discovered this remedy, would there be so much doubt? I don’t think so,” he told French media in an interview.

Before the meeting, WHO had repeatedly warned that the COVID-Organics infusion, which Rajoelina has touted as a remedy against the deadly coronavirus, has not been clinically tested.

But Madagascar claimed the drink is derived from artemisia – a plant with proven anti-malarial properties – and other indigenous herbs.

Already Equatorial Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Niger, and Tanzania have taken delivery of consignments of the potion, which was launched last month.

Also, Nigeria’s president, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), has approved the importation of the remedy amidst criticism from the country’s Pharmaceutical union.

The Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN) kicked against the president’s decision to import the herbal syrup from Madagascar for the treatment of COVID-19 patients, describing the government’s decision as distasteful and disgraceful.

Nigeria’s Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, on Monday said the herbal drug from Madagascar would be subjected to scientific analyses in the country.

The minister also hinted that Nigerian government and the World Health Organisation are also carrying out COVID-19 drug trial in the Federal Capital Territory and fives states.

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