By Foster Obi
Nigeria’s Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, currently African Union (AU) Special envoy is joining the likes of Cyril Ramaphosa, current Chairperson of the AU and President of the Republic of South Africa and H.E. Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director General as key speakers at the AU Covid19 $300m Response Fund launch to help tackle the effects of COVID-19 in Africa.
The webinar event billed for Saturday is in collaboration in collaboration with Afrexim Bank
According to the AU, other key speakers include H.E. Moussa Faki Mahamat, Chairperson of the African Union Commission (AUC), Prof. Benedict O Oramah, Chairman of the Board of Trustees AU COVID-19 Response Fund, Dr. John Nkengasong, Director, Africa CDC and Dr. Vera Songwe, Executive Secretary, UNECA,
The African Umbrella Union noted, “the AU COVID-19 Response Fund is a vehicle for the implementation of the continental strategy to combat the pandemic. The Fundraiser webinar will inform and solicit support and contributions from the African private sector, public and other partners, in order to ensure that the continent can respond effectively to this unprecedented global crisis.
“The webinar is part of a programme of activities that aims to raise awareness of the AU COVID-19 Response Fund, to date, we have raised 44 million, and we need your help to raise a further $300m USD to tackle the immediate effects of COVID-19 in Africa.
“The main objectives of the fund are to mitigate the social, economic and humanitarian impact of COVID-19 in all African countries; boost the capacity of the Africa CDC to support response to public health emergencies across the continent; and support the procurement and distribution of essential COVID-19 medical supplies,” the Union said.
One of the keynote speakers at the Fundraiser will be Cyril Ramaphosa, current Chairperson of the AU and President of the Republic of South Africa. In a call to action he said that “now is the time to come together as one continent to tackle the biggest health crisis of our generation.”
The event will be broadcast in the African Union working languages (Arabic, English, French and Portuguese). There will be interventions from a number of leaders as well as international artists.
The two-hour programme will also feature African celebrities like Ben Pol, Stanley Enow, Gigi Lamayne, Ahmed Soultan, Betty G, Teni, Oualas, Adina Thembi, messages from business like Cairo International Bank(CIB), Mota Engil, Ecobank, Sanlam, Afrex bank and Trace TV and government leaders and, also, frontline health workers.
Pix: Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala