Mr. Charles Abani, UN Resident Coordinator for Ghana.
THE UNITED NATIONS (UN) Resident Coordinator for Ghana, Charles Abani has commended Ghana for its management of the COVID-19 pandemic, rating the country high among other countries on the continent.
According to him, “Ghana was one of those countries that developed a plan quickly to contain the virus” while putting in place measures to rebuild its economy.
Speaking in an interview with the Harriet Nartey, hostess of the highly-rated Diplomatic Affairs programme over the weekend on Pan Africa TV, Mr. Abani said “it was not a surprise that COVID-19 came along” urging that “no one should think that as a globe, we are now free from pandemics.”
“What we’ve shown is an ability to be resilient and fast in responding to pandemics. But we must always remain vigilant”, counseled.
“What we must be consistently working on now is building the resilience of health care systems, building the resilience of supply chain systems so that if the world has to stop again, we are in a better place to support those at the bottom of the pyramid so that their lives do not come to a halt.”
Highlighting the roles played by the UN in supporting countries, particularly Ghana, to get through the pandemic, the UN official said: “Of course, there was a whole global response but the immediacy of it was finding a way to support Ghana to support their capability or to strengthen its capability to be able to handle the pandemic”, noting that the UN “had something called the PCRC which helped us to log into government’s plan.”
“With that and our social-economic response plan, we were able to repurpose a lot of money that was here for routine work to focus on the impacts of the pandemic”, ranging from supporting healthcare systems extensively, providing PPEs, supporting distant and remote learning, as well as improving water and sanitation in schools through the coordination of all UN agencies here in Ghana.
“These are some of the things that we had been working on with the government of Ghana”, he indicated.
On vaccination, the UN Resident Coordinator again commended Ghana for being the first country in Africa to receive covid vaccines through the covax facility.
This, he intimated, was a testimony to the very strong immunization programme in the country.
“Let’s recall [that] in the heat of covid-19 and with a lockdown on, Ghana was still able to administer over 5 million vaccines to young babies even then.
“Ghana most probably had one of the most effective systems that would enable it to roll out the covid-19 vaccines”, he said.
By Nii Adjei Mensahfio