Madagascar Records First Coronavirus Death

ADDIS ABABA – Madagascar has recorded its first death of a patient with coronavirus, according to an official announcement made on television.

The death has been reported today nearly two months after it was first detected in the country.

The 57-year-old hospital worker died on Saturday and had underlying diabetes and high blood pressure before he was infected, reported AFP news agency.

“It is with great sadness that we have to share with all our compatriots, that there is an individual, aged 57, who died from Covid-19,” said Hanta Vololontiana, an official from the anti-coronavirus task team, in a televised speech..

The president of Madagascar, Andry Rajoelina, has been touting a clinically untested herbal tonic as a treatment for Covid-19, which has been taken up by several African countries.

Several African countries have reportedly ordered or expressed interest in the purported remedy, which is known as Covid-Organics.

The tonic drink is derived from artemisia — a plant with proven efficacy in malaria treatment — and other indigenous herbs. The World Health Organization has warned against using untested remedies.

Image: A woman carries a bundle of colored raffia through the Isotry district of Antananarivo on May 16, 2020, where 16 people have been infected with Covid-19 by a single resident of this neighbourhood. [Photo Rijasolo/AFP]