$27.33 Million in Grants Endorsed by the Board of Directors of the African Development Bank to the African Union to Mitigate a Continental Riposte to Curb the Sweep of the Novel Coronavirus
By Abdul Rahman Bangura–
NEW AFRICA BUSINESS NEWS (NABN) Freetown, Sierra Leone– $27.33 million has been disbursed by the Board of Directors of the African Development Bank in grants to boost the African Union (AU) to marshal a continental retort in a bid to regulate the stretch of the COVID-19 pandemic.
This endorsement heeds a pledge to fund the AU’s COVID-19 initiative by the Bank’s president – Akinwumi Adesina during a meeting of the allegorical Bureau of the Conference of Heads of State and Government with Africa’s private sector in April 2020, chaired by the President of South Africa and Chairperson of the AU – Cyril Ramaphosa. The meeting screeched for assistance towards the African Union’s COVID-19 Response Fund established by Moussa Faki Mahamat – AU Commission Chairperson in March of this year.
Shortly after the Bank’s Board approval of this operation, President Adesina stated: “With this financing package, we are reaffirming our strong commitment to a coordinated African response in the face of COVID-19. Most importantly, we are sending a strong signal that collectively, the continent can address the pandemic, which is straining health systems and causing unprecedented socio-economic impacts on the continent.”
AfDB’s grant will subsidize the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) in giving technical assistance and building capacity for thirty-seven African Development Fund (the Bank’s concessional window) eligible countries, especially the Transition States to help fight the pandemic and mitigate its impact. And the grant will help in bolstering sentry at diverse points of entry that is air, sea, and land in African countries, assuring the availability of testing materials and personal protective equipment for frontline workers deployed in hotspots as well as building sub-regional and national capacity for epidemiological surveillance. And that, the operation will similarly aid in assembling gender-disaggregated data and adequate staffing for Africa CDC’s emergency operations center.
“Our response today and support to the African Union is timely and will play a crucial role in helping Africa look inward for solutions to build resilience to this pandemic and future outbreaks,” noted Ms. Wambui Gichuri, Ag. Vice President, Agriculture, Human and Social Development.
In this regard, this backing will fill out several national and sub-regional operations funded by the African Development Bank under its COVID-19 Response Facility to support African countries to contain and mitigate the impacts of the pandemic.
For New Africa Business News (NABN) Abdul Rahman Bangura Reports, Africa Correspondent
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