“Quiet situation here, stunned by the closed …

“Quiet situation here, stunned by the closed …
“Quiet situation here, stunned by the closed …

The Veronese Corrado Passi, a doctor for twenty years and now a writer who emigrated to Cape Town, does not hide his perplexity: «Here we are all shocked by Italy’s decision to ban flights from South Africa and neighboring states. We do not understand why the world is in the grip of this hysteria for the Omicron variant which, it is true, was discovered here, but nothing is scientifically proven with respect to its greater danger: it is one of the Covid mutations that the world is full of. there are no such numbers and effects to justify putting Africa in default ”. And he insists: «Personally, I consider certain political choices to be excessive and out of place. I repeat, at the moment the epidemiological picture is under control and the curve is better than the Italian one “.
Passi was in Verona a few weeks ago: «The climate I breathed there reflects a spread of the virus worse than that of Cape Town. To date, in the last 24 hours, across the country we have had 2,828 new positives and 12 deaths; the South Africans currently positive are 19 thousand, out of about 60 million. There is the Omicron, it is true “, the former doctor reiterates,” but yesterday 7 people in South Africa were infected with this mutation. I don’t think that much terrorism is correct. Today at least I don’t find it right, then we’ll see how it ends ».
Passi is irritated. «More bitter, I would say» and he adds that «the percentage of vaccinated people is lower than the European one, but to compensate there is a screening and testing activity that allows us to monitor the circulation of the infection and keep it under control. Beyond the misleading news, in South Africa there is a first-rate medical tradition and Covid has no greater outbreaks than elsewhere: as happened with HIV, now with the Omicron the message passes that we are the cash an important resonance for the new virological emergencies, but it is not so ». And he blurts out: «Is it possible that a country will be ostracized when the same thing has not happened with the English, Brazilian, Indian variants? Are seven cases of Omicron enough for the world to feel threatened? ”


“We’re all very peaceful here.” Despite the numbers of the contagion on the rise, flights are blocked, the world community is looking at South Africa with concern. It seems that the Omicron variant is spreading from there, and within a couple of weeks it has become the dominant one. “I learned about this variant yesterday (Friday, ed) during a business meeting: a colleague gave us the news and in the evening, watching the Italian news, I received confirmation”, he explains Riccardo Schena, a forty-year-old civil engineer who moved to Cape Town eight years ago where he now works in an international architecture studio. “I check every week the statistics relating to the infection which, for some time now, in the Republic of South Africa have been low. On an alarm scale ranging from one to five “, he explains,” we are stopped at level one, the least worrying one. There is freedom of movement: for example, I go to the gym, which was not possible during the lockdown of the first wave. The restrictions are reduced to a minimum, the only attention required is to wear the mask indoors, after having measured the temperature ». There is no Green pass in South Africa, so tampons or vaccines are not required to go to work or socialize. “Even if I did it”, he continues, recalling that “after taking Covid lightly in December 2020, last summer I did the first dose as planned. And next month, after six months, I’ll do the second one. ” In Cape Town, among the wealthy neighborhoods, vaccination coverage is high, “however, it is more difficult to know the level of immunization in the poorest villages.”
The new variant seems to have taken hold in the vicinity of Johannesburg, “and precisely because of the connections between the two cities, I expect infections will soon increase here too. The vaccine is the only weapon: even in South Africa it is free, while there is no public health system, those who get sick with Covid must pay for their treatment. And I agree: why do I have to pay the health costs of those who do not want to get vaccinated out of my own pocket? ».

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