Globally, the impacts of COVID-19 on children have been understated. Researchers are now ramping up their focus on the much younger population. But what are the lessons across Africa, where children make up 40% of the population?
Lagos, Nigeria—It came as a surprise to Yetunde Aremu when her husband tested positive for COVID-19 on 20 August 2021. Since they first learned of the pandemic in 2020, Aremu’s family had observed all COVID protocols. They stayed at home, washed their hands frequently and kept their guests at a minimum. Less than a week after her husband, Aremu tested positive. But it didn’t stop there. While recovering in their house in Lekki, their nine-year-old son also tested positive and, soon after, their one-year-old baby had the same results. ‘The most concerning thing with kids, especially babies,’ Aremu said, ‘is that they are not able to articulate and would just cry.’