Bismack Biyombo, Samuel Eto’o and Didier Drogba have criticised two medical professors who claimed that testing for a vaccine against coronavirus should be carried out in Africa.
The comments were made on French television about the potential BCG vaccine, which is usually used against tuberculosis.
Professor Jean-Paul Mira, head of the intensive care unit at the Cochin Hospital in Paris, said: ‘If I can be provocative, shouldn’t we do this study in Africa where there are no masks, no treatment, no resuscitation?
‘The same as for some AIDS studies where prostitutes try things because we know they’re unprotected’.
Professor Camille Locht, research director at Inserm, replied: ‘You are right. We are currently thinking in parallel about a study in Africa to make this same type of approach with the BCG.
‘There is a tender process that has gone out or is going to go out. We will seriously think about that.
‘That doesn’t prevent us from thinking in parallel about a study in Europe and Australia.’
Former Barcelona and Cameroon striker Eto’o hit out at the comments.
He wrote ‘You are just SH*T. Africa isn’t yours to play with.’
Ex-Chelsea and Ivory Coast forward Drogba accused the doctors of treating people like guinea pigs and labelled the remarks as ‘racist’.
He wrote on Twitter: ‘It is inconceivable that we continue to accept this. I strongly denounce these serious, racist and contemptuous remarks!
Il est inconcevable que nous continuons à accepter ceci. L Afrique n est pas un laboratoire.— Didier Drogba (@didierdrogba) April 2, 2020
Je dénonce vivement ces propos graves, racistes et méprisants!
‘Help us save lives in Africa and stop the spread of this virus which is destabilising the whole world, instead of considering us as guinea pigs. It is absurd!
‘African leaders have a responsibility to protect people from these heinous plots.’
Another former Chelsea striker, Demba Ba, who played for Senegal, also criticised the comments.
Bienvenue en occident , la où le blanc se croit tellement supérieur que racisme et débilité deviennent banalité. TIME TO RISE ✊🏿 pic.twitter.com/R08R7K9QAw— Demba Ba (@dembabafoot) April 2, 2020
Eto’o commented on Ba’s post, saying: ‘Sons of bitches’.
BCG is one of various vaccines being considered for potential use against coronavirus. Basketball player Bismack Biyombo also reacted: