Houthis Mislead Corona Virus Control In Yemen With Vague Data
While the fabric of life in Yemen continues to be tattered by the Houthis, the control of the coronovirus pandemic is also becoming more and more difficult. It seems that the actual number of cases of infection cannot be ascertained because Houthi are refusing to share the actual numbers in regions held by them.
The Houthi held regions have maximum number of infected cases, the actual numbers of which are difficult to access due to lack of coordination and transparency between health offices across Yemen. The increase in the number of cases began early this week when several cases were detected in the port city of Aden.
There have been at least four deaths in Aden in the last few weeks, due to respiratory complications. Diagnosis remains poor due to lack of testing swabs.
Groups of doctors stationed in Aden, Yemen’s temporary capital have demanded that the Southern Transitional Council put the country in a 24 hour lockdown because the deaths could be possible due to the spreading Covid-19 disease led by the corona virus. The numbers shared by Houthis are dubious. The actual number of infections might be much larger, feel the medical fraternity.
In March, the Southern Transitional Council took control of the temporary capital under self-rule. This has significantly disrupted the return of the internationally recognized government and stalled efforts to fight the spread of the virus. The council’s last move to impose a complete lockdown in Aden has failed as people flocked the streets.
With unemployment having enveloped literally eight million Yemenis under Houthi controlled regions, the economy is in a standstill mode. Medical facilities are in bad condition and people in hundreds are flocking the hospitals with respiratory ailments.
Sadly so, healthcare workers in Sanaa have spoken to friends outside Yemen or to local media outlets sharing that doctors are being pressurized by rebels not to disclose information of sick patients. Most of the suspected coronavirus cases have been taken to Kuwait hospital.
It has become clear that unless the Houthis and the Council can get down to sharing information about ground reality, it will be extremely difficult to fight the battle against the pandemic that has crippled even the most developed economies of the world.