New book exposes how the misuse of science compounded SA’s Covid crisis
One Virus, Two Countries examines SA’s response to Covid and its first world minority’s fixation on Western science
Now, and in the past, “following the science” on Covid-19 has landed SA in trouble. This is not an indictment of science, but of the way it is understood in SA.
My new book One Virus, Two Countries, which examines SA’s response to Covid-19’s arrival in 2020, points out that SA fared far worse than the rest of Africa — its case and death numbers were equal to those of the rest of Africa combined. While it is commonly claimed that this is because SA tests more, its own scientists have acknowledged that this is not. The book argues that this happened because the minority in SA public life is fixated on Europe and North America.
Repeated claims that the country was “following the science”, really meant it was following a particular science followed by some Western scientists — one which ensured high case and death rates, because it meant not taking enough protective measures needed to prevent the virus’s spread, not only restrictions when they were needed but also testing and tracing the contacts of infected people...