Cape Verde markets reopen, beaches to remain closed

Cape Verde will allow markets to reopen on Saturday as the archipelago’s state of emergency to stem the spread of coronavirus is lifted, though beaches will remain closed.

Santiago, where the capital Praia is located, remains the only one of Cape Verde’s 10 islands with active cases of COVID-19, numbering about 240. 

President Jorges Carlos Fonseca announced Thursday evening the end of the state of emergency on the island, with a gradual return to normal from Saturday. 

The state of emergency had been gradually lifted elsewhere in the tropical Atlantic archipelago where two other islands had been affected, Sao Vicente and Boavista, with 3 and 56 cases respectively — all of which have recovered. 

Beaches will remain closed in Santiago and Boavista, Prime Minister Ulisses Correia e Silva said on Friday, though flights to and from abroad are now set to resume in July.

A fifth of the economy of Cape Verde, located off the coast of Senegal, is dependent on tourism.

In markets, masks will be compulsory as they have been in public since May 25, Silva said. 

Cape Verde has reported a total of 390 cases of infection and four deaths.