Ghana: ECOWAS advocates massive private-sector support against Ebola

Accra, Ghana (PANA) - The High-Level Coordination Meeting of ECOWAS partners in the fight against the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) which ended in Accra, Ghana, on Friday, has urged the private sector to galvanize their efforts towards mobilizing investments in the affected countries.

The meeting, in its 15-point Final Communiqué, urged the private sector to also be involved in the recovery and reconstruction process following the Ebola scourge.

It encouraged them to also establish a platform for private sector mobilization.

The meeting, held under the auspices of the Chairman of the Authority of ECOWAS Heads of State and Government, Ghana’s President John Dramani Mahama and President Faure Essozimna Gnassingbe of Togo, the Coordinator of the Process on the fight against Ebola in the region, was attended by representatives of development partners and private sector organizations.

According to the communique, "In order to support the reconstruction efforts, the meeting stressed the need for a strong advocacy for debt cancellation in favour of the affected countries.

"It also welcomed the Ebola Recovery Assessment commissioned by the UN Secretary General and urged all stakeholders to be fully involved in the process and build on the outcome of the assessment to fine-tune the identified areas of intervention."

The meeting stressed the need for cost effectiveness as the guiding principle for effective coordination among stakeholders and adopted a framework which provides for two levels of coordination, namely Strategic and Operational.

It also called for the consideration of cross-border perspective as well as communities’ involvement in prevention and response strategies including safe access for humanitarian agencies.

It reiterated the need to remove the restrictions and bans on the movement of persons and goods to and from the affected countries, and also to resume air traffic in those countries.

In order to address the negative impact of the epidemic and enhance resilience for sustainable development, the meeting emphasized the need to prepare for post-Ebola recovery and reconstruction.

To this end, it identified priority areas of intervention as Water, Sanitation and Health, Infrastructure and Basic Services, Peace Building, Institution Reconstruction and Governance, and Socio-economic revitalization.

The meeting expressed gratitude to development partners that have contributed to the anti-Ebola fight and commended Presidents Mahama and Gnassingbe for their leadership, relentless efforts and commitment towards the eradication of the epidemic in the region.

Partners represented at the meeting, which was also attended by government ministers and ECOWAS Commissioners, included the UN, WHO, EU, African Union, UEMOA and the Mano River Union.

From March 2014, the Ebola outbreak has claimed more than 8,400 lives with severe socio-
economic devastation, especially in the ECOWAS region.
-0- PANA VAO 17Jan2015

17 january 2015 16:17:46

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