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Fomenting disunity between China and Africa is wishful thinking
Consul General Lin Jing

Wuhan, capital of China’s Hubei province and the previous epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic, released the revised numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases and deaths on April 17. As of the end of April 16, the total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases was revised up by 325 to 50,333, and the number of fatalities increased by 1,290 to 3,869.

Data revision in the case of highly infectious diseases is a common international practice. To ensure absolute accuracy of the information for every case and the authenticity of all statistics, the members of the Special Task Force on COVID-19-Related Big Data and Epidemiological Investigation in Wuhan cross-checked all the numbers of confirmed and fatal cases, compared the relevant data online so as to remove duplicates and rectify omissions, and went all out to collect data from each and every pandemic related site in Wuhan, including all the fever clinics, hospitals, mobile hospitals, quarantine centers, affected residential areas, detention facilities, nursing homes and all the other related facilities, and them verified and confirmed all the patients’ personal information, to guarantee that the whole city has been covered and no case left out .

Data revision by Wuhan represents a sense of responsibility to history, to people, to the lives lost, and with the intention of respecting lives, facts, and surely will stand the test of history.

Since the pandemic broke out, the Chinese government has timely informed WHO and other countries of the pandemic situation, and taken the most comprehensive, thorough and rigorous measures in an open, transparent and responsible manner and exhausted efforts to stem the spread of the pandemic. The prevention and control measures taken by the Chinese government fully demonstrates that China faithfully practices the "people-centered" philosophy and always puts people’s lives and health as its top priority, which well explains to the international community the importance laid by China on people’s right to life and right to health, as these are universally recognized basic and the most precious human rights.

Yet certain American top politicians have made every attempt to defame and smear China ever since the outbreak. At the early stage of the pandemic, they accused China's anti-pandemic measures of “violating human rights” and “restricting freedom” and maliciously slandered China’s system and Communist Party of China. While the numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases and deaths sharply increased in the US, in order to shift blames and shirk responsibility for inaction and slow response to the pandemic, they went on accusing China of“failing to provide timely information” or “disinformation”, hyping up the issue of origins of the COVID-19 , insinuating that the virus had something to do with the Wuhan Institute of Virology, vilifying China’s supports for other countries as “with geopolitical ends”.

Recently these American politicians have targeted WHO Director General Dr. Tedros, accusing him of “mismanagement” and “ covering up the spread of coronavirus”, and halted more than $400 million funding for WHO, which has triggered righteous indignation and harsh criticism from countries around world. World leaders have issued statements in support of the WHO, among them, the AU Chairperson and President of South Africa Cyril reaffirmed AU ’s appreciation for Dr Tedros’s exceptional leadership in response to this unprecedented global health crisis, as well as AU’s unwavering support to the WHO and Dr Tedros.

As part of its’ plot to discredit China, the US side also made unwarranted allegations such as “discrimination towards Africans in places like Guangdong”, in an attempt to sow discords between China and Africa, which was sternly refuted by both China and African side.

The Chinese people always see in the African people partners and brothers through thick and thin. China-Africa friendship is unbreakable as it is deeply rooted in this land. China thanks the African countries and peoples for their solidarity and support during the most difficult period of China's anti-pandemic battle. While fighting the virus at home, China has donated large amounts of test kits, masks, protective suits, goggles, face shields, forehead thermometers, medical-use gloves, shoe covers, ventilators and other supplies to the African Union and African countries, including South Africa. China will continue helping African friends to the best of its ability.

We firmly reject differential treatment, and have zero tolerance for discrimination. During our fight against the coronavirus, the Chinese government ensures all foreigners are treated equally in China, in particular, our African brothers and sisters. The local authorities in Guangdong have worked promptly to improve their working method and addressed some African countries’ concerns by adopting measures such as designating hotels for the accommodation of foreigners required to undergo medical observation and price adjustment for those in financial difficulties, setting up effective communication mechanism with foreign consulates-general in Guangzhou, etc..

To smear and stigmatize China can never cover up historical facts and truth, to shift blames will not stop the spread of the virus, and to foment disunity between China and Africa is only a wishful thinking. International cooperation is the only right way forward. Certain US politicians should stop political manipulation, get its own house in order and focus more on fighting the virus, boosting the economy, and working together with all the other countries in the world to combat the pandemic.

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