The war against the Covid-19 pandemic will be difficult to fight in Africa in general and Namibia in particular. At the centre of the epidemic is the age of misinformation and conspiracy theory peddling.
There is a full-scale commercial scam claiming to offer at-home preventative remedies and cures without science-based evidence. Some people made a killing selling elephant poop to these clever people. I kid you not! Cattle breeders who have depended on Ivermectin for the treatment of their animals against parasites cannot find it anywhere in the country. Guess what? Someone sold the idea as the solution, the cure and preventative remedy for Covid-19! Ivermectin! Humans are injecting and imbibing this concoction without a doctor’s prescription, even when they don’t show signs of being sick.
One dentist put up a fit for all and to whom it may concern prescription on social media.
Ivermectin is sold out. If the theory is that the virus was created to enrich pharmaceutical companies by selling the vaccine, then the same theorists are enriching the same pharmaceuticals by selling the less tested and not-scientifically proven Ivermectin against the deadly corona virus.
Don’t forget that the manufacturers of hydroxychloroquin and zinc already made billions of dollars in profits when it was their turn. Meanwhile, the Zambezi region ran out of the neem tree and all other herbal concoctions. God forbid someone doesn’t find the cure in elephant foreskins.
Some religious zealots are keen on their 666 biblical perspective. Some people have claimed the virus is a bio-weapon accidentally or deliberately leaked from a laboratory, a population control scheme (to eliminate the black race), the result of a spy operation, or the side-effects of 5G upgrades of cellular networks.
Italians would not have been annihilated so callously if the genetic formula targeted the black race (maybe Hannibal Barca, like Genghis Khan, had too much strong genes, which is why everyone came out with a tan). One particular cognitive bias in their arguments is that they claim that the vaccine is a chip that the government will use to eavesdrop or monitor citizens.
Maybe they have never sent anyone a WhatsApp location using a smartphone. Or downloaded a 700MB movie for 16 days in 2005 vs downloading a 4K movie in 2020 in three minutes.
In the end, Africa is yet to develop its own vaccine to compete or have a say in global health calamities. Namibia has never even produced a single contraceptive tablet, to start with. At least Unam produced sanitiser.
Why are the Chinese in Namibia not part of the casualties since the pandemic started? Chinese living in Namibia are all vaccinated. They don’t attend our funerals. They adhere to Covid-19 protocols. They don’t go to overcrowded shopping centres, bars or attending after-tears parties. They grow food in their backyards and stay indoors. They’re not the best keepers of hygienic methods, but their anti-social habits should be applauded.
If Namibia or Africa in general has to be taken seriously, great strides are needed in the field of medical research and innovation. Iran, Cuba, Russia, China and India can never be intimidated by any nation because they’re advanced in all spheres. Developed countries are back in business. We are still debating animal medicines. The pandemic just got started. Let’s brace for impact.