The COVID-19 situation in the East and Horn of Africa, and the Great Lakes (EHAGL) region continues to evolve. As of 9 June, there were 21,856 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the countries covered by UNHCR’s EHAGL Regional Bureau. Since the last weekly report, the number of COVID-19 cases has increased by 32%. Sudan alone accounts for 29% of the cases in the region. Ethiopia and Sudan have witnessed the largest percentage increase in the number of COVID-19 cases whilst Tanzania has not reported on new cases for over a month.
While there has been no large-scale outbreak amongst UNHCR’s populations of concern so far, 4.6 million refugees and 8.1 million IDPs and their host communities are at risk. The need for preparedness remains urgent as local transmission is ongoing in all countries of the region. Measures by governments in the region to contain the spread of COVID-19 continue to evolve, and many restrictions will remain in place during this month.
On 6 June, the President of Kenya pronounced his eighth Presidential Address regarding COVID-19, outlining the difficulties in balancing public health with the economic and social needs in responding to the outbreak. He stressed that key requirements to lift overall restrictions were not in place, including the rising number of cases and the lack of isolation facilities and trained medical personnel in some parts of the country. International air travel restrictions were extended, and daily curfews are maintained with modified hours. However, movement restrictions in the Eastleigh section of Nairobi, where some 17,000 refugees reside, were lifted on 7 June.