The WHO chief today angrily slammed scientists as ‘racist’ for calling on Africa to become the world’s coronavirus testing ground.

It comes as world powers are racing to find an antidote to the contagion which has so far infected more than 1.3million people globally and killed over 70,000.

A vaccine is estimated to be 12 to 18 months away.

The WHO chief today angrily slammed scientists as ‘racist’ for calling on Africa to become the world’s coronavirus testing ground.

‘Africa cannot and will not be a testing ground for any vaccine,’ WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told a virtual news conference, adding that the suggestion was a hangover from the ‘colonial mentality’.

‘It was a disgrace, appalling, to hear during the 21st century, to hear from scientists, that kind of remark. We condemn this in the strongest terms possible, and we assure you that this will not happen,’ the former Ethiopian health minister added.

‘Africa cannot and will not be a testing ground for any vaccine,’ WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told a virtual news conference, adding that the suggestion was a hangover from the ‘colonial mentality’.

‘It was a disgrace, appalling, to hear during the 21st century, to hear from scientists, that kind of remark. We condemn this in the strongest terms possible, and we assure you that this will not happen,’ the former Ethiopian health minister added.

It comes as world powers are racing to find an antidote to the contagion which has so far infected more than 1.3million people globally and killed over 70,000. A vaccine is estimated to be 12 to 18 months away.

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