South African President Cyril Ramaphosa last week chaired the introductory meeting of the Commission on African COVID-19 Response. Ramaphosa established the Commission after his appointment at this year’s 34th ordinary session of the African Union’s Assembly of Heads of States and Government in February. Acting presidency spokesperson Tyrone Seale said this is in recognition of the crucial role played by Ramaphosa in driving the continental COVID-19 response during his tenure as chair of the AU in 2020. The Commission comes amid various challenges faced by the impact of COVID-19 on the continent which includes increased levels of violence during the pandemic, unemployment, and poverty, according to a new UNICEF South Africa U-Report survey. Professor Narnia Bohler-Muller is from the Developmental, Capable, and Ethical State division at the Human Sciences Research Council.
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