Covid – 19 in the USA: Some African leaders are talking about it

 Coronavirus keeps hitting  hard in the United States of America specifically  in New York the  epicenter  of the virus. The entire  African community is  also affected  like all other community groups in the USA. We have interviewed some  African leaders to understand how the  pandemic of the century has impacted the African community. They are all unanimous  how  difficult it is  to give precise statistics regarding  the number of people  who have been infected or who have died.

This article was published in French few days ago and since people are asking for the English version, we have decided to do so. Many things have been evolved since then such as deaths toll and people who have been infected with the virus.

Sadio Yaya Barry: Senegalese Association in the United States of America president of Senegalese Association in the United States of America

Sadio Yaya Barry president of the Senegalese Association  in the United States of  America : “It is very difficult to give an exact number when it comes to the covid – 19. We cannot say for example that all the dead people  are related to covid – 19 but they died in the context of covid – 19. Do you see the nuance? Nevertheless, we have  recorded  16 people who have died  in the USA including 15 in New York and 1 in Ohio. We have actually 3 to 4 serious cases and a few cases in  Nursing homes.

Mamadou Diallo president of Union Fouta

Mamadou Diallo is president of Union Fouta (an umbrella  organization of many  associations of Guineans   in the United States of America): We have  recorded some people who have died,  and we are coping with  bodies. It appeals to the entire Guinean community in the USA and we need everyone’s support as we are keeping ourselves away from  bodies. This does not allow to do the rituals. To date, we have registered between 19 to 20 people who passed away. Talking about those who have been tested  positive let’s say it is medical and it is private. People do not want to reveal their situation. ”

Abdourahamane Diallo

Abdourahamane Diallo : (Editor’s note: Abdourahamane  is  president of the African Empowerment Project and secretary general of the African Advisory Council which is an organization that brings  together almost all African associations in New York and which is overseeing by  the Bronx borough president office. He is also a candidate for New York City Council district 16  in the Bronx. If elected, he will be the first African to hold that position in the Bronx.

” It’s difficult. We do not know  the death toll  and  people who have been infected  except close families can tell you.  It’s a taboo subject. It’s when someone dies that we talk about it. Dead  people  are usually the elderly.  We have mobilized so far 30 young people who will distribute 10,000 masks to the elderly. ”

Ramatu Ahmed ( right)  Executive Director of African Life Center

Ramatu Ahmed Executive Director of African Life Center: (Editor’s note: Ramatu speaks on behalf of the Ghanaian community in the USA. She is a convinced Pan-African. She was the first  African lady  to inviting  Her Excellency Dr. Arikana Chihombori-Quao the  former African Union Ambassador to Washington DC, while she was still in her position.

  “We do not have the correct data of people who have been  tested positive, even the authorities cannot tell you exactly how many people are infected as there is  no a  screening center. Not everyone is comfortable saying that I have this. It’s a frustration at all levels. Covid – 19 is a disease to be taken seriously. They told us  to call when we have symptoms and we don’t know at what stage of the symptoms we should call. People are sick and are at home. They call when they are dying. I know that there are 8 Africans who died in Staten Island.  To date, 13 people have died in the Ghanaian community.

Mory Kouyate: President of African Immigrant’s Commission Inc

Mory Kouyate: President of African Immigrant’s Commission Inc. (Editor’s note: it is an organization that works in 3 different states, namely: New York, New Jersey and Connecticut):

“We focus on raising  awareness and communication. We make people know  through videos how  to respect the guidelines  issued by the authorities:  washing  your hands, wearing a mask  and gloves. We are also focusing on nutrition. You have to eat healthy food and drink for example lemon and orange juices which contain vitamin C. We do this not only in the USA but also in Guinea. We will  keep doing so. As far as numbers are concerned, it is difficult to say exactly how many people have been infected with the virus. ”

Bazona Barnabe Bado

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