Alexa

AP PHOTOS: Africa weathers COVID-19 storm in 2020

Muslim girls walk through a street after prayers in Lagos, Nigeria, Friday, July 31, 2020. (AP Photo/Sunday Alamba, File)
Train commuters hold on to the side of an overcrowded passenger train in Soweto, South Africa, Monday, March 16, 2020. (AP Photo/Themba Hadebe, File)
Residents from the Alexandra township in Johannesburg gather in a stadium to be tested for COVID-19 Wednesday, April 29, 2020. It was just a question ...
A police officer holds a pistol during clashes with protesters near a burning tyre barricade in the Kariobangi slum of Nairobi, Kenya Friday, May 8, 2...
Children pose for a photo in Komao village, on the outskirts of Koidu, district of Kono, Sierra Leone, Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020. (AP Photo/Leo Correa, Fi...
Marie poses for a portrait in Komao village outskirts of Koidu, district of Kono, Sierra Leone, Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020. The 16-year-old didn't want to ...
A farmer's daughter waves her shawl in the air to try to chase away swarms of desert locusts from her crops, in Katitika village, Kitui county, Kenya ...
Henry sits in a trash bin as he and other homeless people rest at the Caledonian stadium in downtown Pretoria, South Africa, Thursday April 2, 2020, a...
Residents desperate for a planned distribution of food for those suffering under Kenya's coronavirus-related movement restrictions push through a gate...
Schoolchildren joke around and play at the Olympic Primary School in Kibera, one of the capital Nairobi's poorest areas, in Kenya Monday, Oct. 12, 202...
In this photo taken Thursday, April 30, 2020, mourners gather to bury an elderly man believed to have died of the coronavirus in Mogadishu, Somalia. Y...
Kenyan children and men are photographed in front of a new mural painted this week showing an incident in 2016 when a Kenyan riot policeman repeatedly...
South African National Defense Forces patrol the Men's Hostel in the densely populated Alexandra township east of Johannesburg, March 28, 2020, enforc...
A student, wearing a face mask and shield to protect against the spread of COVID-19, returns to the Melpark Primary School in Johannesburg, Monday Aug...
Supporters of the presidential candidate Kouadio Konan Bertin, dance over a sound truck during the final campaign rally in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, Thurs...
South African National Defense Forces patrol the Sjwetla informal settlement after pushing back residents into their homes, on the outskirts of the Al...
Sibongile Zulu poses for a portrait inside her home in Johannesburg, South Africa, Tuesday, July 28, 2020. Zulu is HIV positive and couldn't get her f...
A boy wears a mask as a preventative measure against the spread of the new coronavirus, as he navigates a flood of water mixed with garbage following ...
In this Aug. 5, 2020, file photo, fresh graves fill the Olifantsveil Cemetery outside Johannesburg, South Africa. It was just a question of time until...
This Tuesday, Aug. 11, 2020 photo provided by the French Army shows oil leaking from the MV Wakashio, a bulk carrier ship that ran aground on a coral ...
Raymond Brian, center, a Ugandan refugee and a nonconforming gender person who also goes by the name of "Mother Nature" has his make-up done by fellow...
Residents protest with the covered dead body of a man, who they claimed had been beaten by police for being outside during the dusk to dawn curfew, bu...
Ballet student Anthony Mmesoma Madu, center, dances in the street as fellow dancers look on in Lagos, Nigeria on Aug. 18, 2020. Cellphone video showin...
A woman wearing a face mask to prevent the spread of coronavirus walks past a mural of a mask-wearing Mona Lisa, in the Medina of Asilah, northern Mor...
A student takes notes inside a classroom at a school in Harare, Monday, Sept, 28, 2020. Zimbabwe schools have reopened in phases, but with smaller num...
Irene Wanzila, 10, works breaking rocks with a hammer along with her younger brother, older sister and mother, who says she was left without a choice ...
Tigray refugees who fled the conflict in the Ethiopia's Tigray carry their furniture on the banks of the Tekeze River on the Sudan-Ethiopia border, in...
Tigray refugees who fled the conflict in the Ethiopia's Tigray ride a bus going to the Village 8 temporary shelter, near the Sudan-Ethiopia border, in...
Cyclists ride the gavel roads of the Free States outside Clarens, South Africa, Saturday Aug. 8, 2020. The Covid-19 pandemic has come into full force ...
People demonstrate on the street to protest against police brutality, in Lagos, Nigeria, Sunday Oct. 18, 2020. Nigerian protests against police brutal...

Muslim girls walk through a street after prayers in Lagos, Nigeria, Friday, July 31, 2020. (AP Photo/Sunday Alamba, File)

Train commuters hold on to the side of an overcrowded passenger train in Soweto, South Africa, Monday, March 16, 2020. (AP Photo/Themba Hadebe, File)

Residents from the Alexandra township in Johannesburg gather in a stadium to be tested for COVID-19 Wednesday, April 29, 2020. It was just a question ...

A police officer holds a pistol during clashes with protesters near a burning tyre barricade in the Kariobangi slum of Nairobi, Kenya Friday, May 8, 2...

Children pose for a photo in Komao village, on the outskirts of Koidu, district of Kono, Sierra Leone, Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020. (AP Photo/Leo Correa, Fi...

Marie poses for a portrait in Komao village outskirts of Koidu, district of Kono, Sierra Leone, Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020. The 16-year-old didn't want to ...

A farmer's daughter waves her shawl in the air to try to chase away swarms of desert locusts from her crops, in Katitika village, Kitui county, Kenya ...

Henry sits in a trash bin as he and other homeless people rest at the Caledonian stadium in downtown Pretoria, South Africa, Thursday April 2, 2020, a...

Residents desperate for a planned distribution of food for those suffering under Kenya's coronavirus-related movement restrictions push through a gate...

Schoolchildren joke around and play at the Olympic Primary School in Kibera, one of the capital Nairobi's poorest areas, in Kenya Monday, Oct. 12, 202...

In this photo taken Thursday, April 30, 2020, mourners gather to bury an elderly man believed to have died of the coronavirus in Mogadishu, Somalia. Y...

Kenyan children and men are photographed in front of a new mural painted this week showing an incident in 2016 when a Kenyan riot policeman repeatedly...

South African National Defense Forces patrol the Men's Hostel in the densely populated Alexandra township east of Johannesburg, March 28, 2020, enforc...

A student, wearing a face mask and shield to protect against the spread of COVID-19, returns to the Melpark Primary School in Johannesburg, Monday Aug...

Supporters of the presidential candidate Kouadio Konan Bertin, dance over a sound truck during the final campaign rally in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, Thurs...

South African National Defense Forces patrol the Sjwetla informal settlement after pushing back residents into their homes, on the outskirts of the Al...

Sibongile Zulu poses for a portrait inside her home in Johannesburg, South Africa, Tuesday, July 28, 2020. Zulu is HIV positive and couldn't get her f...

A boy wears a mask as a preventative measure against the spread of the new coronavirus, as he navigates a flood of water mixed with garbage following ...

In this Aug. 5, 2020, file photo, fresh graves fill the Olifantsveil Cemetery outside Johannesburg, South Africa. It was just a question of time until...

This Tuesday, Aug. 11, 2020 photo provided by the French Army shows oil leaking from the MV Wakashio, a bulk carrier ship that ran aground on a coral ...

Raymond Brian, center, a Ugandan refugee and a nonconforming gender person who also goes by the name of "Mother Nature" has his make-up done by fellow...

Residents protest with the covered dead body of a man, who they claimed had been beaten by police for being outside during the dusk to dawn curfew, bu...

Ballet student Anthony Mmesoma Madu, center, dances in the street as fellow dancers look on in Lagos, Nigeria on Aug. 18, 2020. Cellphone video showin...

A woman wearing a face mask to prevent the spread of coronavirus walks past a mural of a mask-wearing Mona Lisa, in the Medina of Asilah, northern Mor...

A student takes notes inside a classroom at a school in Harare, Monday, Sept, 28, 2020. Zimbabwe schools have reopened in phases, but with smaller num...

Irene Wanzila, 10, works breaking rocks with a hammer along with her younger brother, older sister and mother, who says she was left without a choice ...

Tigray refugees who fled the conflict in the Ethiopia's Tigray carry their furniture on the banks of the Tekeze River on the Sudan-Ethiopia border, in...

Tigray refugees who fled the conflict in the Ethiopia's Tigray ride a bus going to the Village 8 temporary shelter, near the Sudan-Ethiopia border, in...

Cyclists ride the gavel roads of the Free States outside Clarens, South Africa, Saturday Aug. 8, 2020. The Covid-19 pandemic has come into full force ...

People demonstrate on the street to protest against police brutality, in Lagos, Nigeria, Sunday Oct. 18, 2020. Nigerian protests against police brutal...

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — It was just a question of time until Africa would fall prey to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Already seasoned by years of conflicts and diseases, the continent was relatively well-prepared to weather the coronavirus storm. Resilience, cooperation and innovation helped Africans survive and flatten the curve of the initial wave of the virus. But for how long?

In the early days of the pandemic, Soweto trains were packed with workers returning home, showing how the virus would spread. As the disease took hold in South Africa, long, snaking lines formed at testing stations in Johannesburg's Alexandra township and at sports fields in Pretoria and the first COVID-19 victims were laid to rest.

Across the continent, virtually every country went into lockdowns that brought police and military to the streets to keep residents inside their homes. Scenes of panic erupted in Nairobi as food was distributed to the needy, violent riots shook the streets of Nigeria’s economic hub Lagos.

If some took advantage of the pandemic, such as South African officials who allegedly profited from corrupt deals to purchase medical supplies to fight the pandemic, life kept on going for two young Nigerian girls sporting designer sunglasses as they celebrated Eid al-Fitr. Amid the battle against COVID-19, Ethiopia launched an unprecedented crackdown on its Tigray region.

No pandemic could stop children in Sierra Leone’s Kono district from playing for the camera, nor could it prevent a lone gravel biker from riding into the sunset on a cold winter day in South Africa’s Free State province.

Resilience. Innovation. Cooperation. Survival. This is Africa, the continent, in 2020.


Updated : 2021-01-19 15:04 GMT+08:00