First, I would like to let people know that this opinion is personal and I don’t speak on behalf of any group or institution.
The question here is, should African students and expats be repatriated? My answer is “no”. The choice is hard to make and the truth is ugly to face.
At this point, it is very important to be realistic and understand that Africa is not in a position to battle fairly with such a pandemic. African students or expats are facing very tough situations, most of us have to, once again, look like the poor neglected kid left behind watching all our friends from different other countries being repatriated in a very professional way. I know it might sound cruel, but to me, it’s a blessing in disguise.
Objectively, Africa is less equipped than China to handle the Coronavirus. Coming back home will just heighten the risk of contaminating a very vulnerable and already tormented population, it will lessen your chance to get the best treatment in case you are infected. It’s clear that the sentimental aspect of things will push you to go and try to be close to home and family. That’s just not the best thing to do!
Presently, the best thing to do for everybody is to stay home, keep clean, stay away from crowds and close human contacts. Let the Chinese government do what they are best known for and be patient. I, personally, was in Beijing during the SARS period, it was way deadlier and scarier than this Coronavirus.
This opinion might offend some but it comes from good intentions and a very rational spirit.”Jiāyóu” my African brother and sisters, “Jiāyóu” China. Better days are ahead!