Renowned Zimbabwe-born virologist and
Aids researcher Dr Sikhulile Moyo has won the 2022 German Africa Award for their work identifying
the COVID-19 variant omicron.

He won the award together with a South African bio-informatics
scientist Prof Tulio de Oliveira.

Omicron is a variant of SARS-CoV-2 first reported to the World Health Organization by the Network for Genomics Surveillance in South Africa on 24 November 2021. It was first detected in Botswana and has spread to become the predominant variant in circulation around the world.

Meanwhile, There is a reduced risk of hospitalization for Omicron compared to the Delta variant. But WHO warns that it should not be dismissed as “mild”.

An increase in the number of COVID-19 related deaths because of the Omicron variant have been seen in many countries, especially where vaccination levels are low among vulnerable populations.