The overall shipment includes over 1.5 million laboratory diagnostic test kits and over 100 tonnes of infection prevention and control commodities.
HEALTH VIRUS RELIEF
Uganda is among the African Union (AU) member states that have benefited from a donation of medical equipment to fight the Corona Virus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) from Jack Ma and Alibaba Foundations.
The overall shipment includes over 1.5 million laboratory diagnostic test kits and over 100 tonnes of infection prevention and control commodities. Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) and the Government of Ethiopia received the consignment of the medical equipment on Monday.
The Ministry of Health through its twitter handle yesterday afternoon acknowledged that Uganda's consignment had reached Entebbe airport, and it came aboard Ethiopian Airlines. It contained; 100,000 masks, 20,089 test kits, 741 PPEs (Personal Protective Equipment) and 1,111 face shields.
The relief initiative was launched by the Prime Minister of Ethiopia, Dr. Abiy Ahmed, the Jack Ma Foundation, and Alibaba Foundation as part of actions towards implementation of the Africa joint continental strategy for COVID-19 led by the AU through Africa CDC.
"On behalf of the chairperson of the African Union, His Excellency Cyril Ramaphosa, we thank the Jack Ma and Alibaba Foundations for this generous hospitality and contribution to the continent. We thank His Excellency the Prime Minister, and the Government of Ethiopia, for facilitating the donation," said Edward Xolisa Makaya, South Africa's Permanent Representative to Ethiopia and the AU.
Dr John Nkengasong, Director of Africa CDC said; "This is a great honour and initiative and a great sign of solidarity that the world needs at this critical time. The test kits and other materials will support African countries in their fight against this outbreak. We are facing a humanitarian situation, an economic situation and a security situation in the continent and Africa CDC clearly applauds the initiative of the prime minister and the Jack Ma and Alibaba Foundations."
The COVID-19 outbreak continues to spread rapidly across the continents of the world claiming thousands of lives and huge resources. In just about three months, it has caused over 12,000 deaths worldwide and impacted socio-economic activities, particularly tourism and transport.
Ethiopian Airlines will help distribute the equipment, consisting 20,000 laboratory diagnostic test kits, 100,000 medical masks, and 1000 protective suits and face shields, to each of the Member States as part of their contribution to the fight against COVID-19 in Africa.
"We appeal to our ministries of health to ensure that these materials are distributed and used where they are mostly needed," said Ambassador Mohamed Idriss Farah, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Djibouti, Dean of African Diplomatic Corps, and Chair of the AU Peace and Security Council.