Senegal: AU, Kenya to send 170 health workers to Ebola-hit countries

Dakar, Senegal (PANA) – The African Union (AU) and the Kenyan government will send 170 health workers to Ebola hit countries, the AU said in a statement on Thursday.

According to the statement, the health workers will depart Kenya on 9 January following their pre-deployment training workshop on Thursday in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi.

''The general consensus among African leaders who addressed the official opening of the pre-deployment training is that through solidarity, the continent will defeat the Ebola virus disease, that has so far claimed thousands of lives, mainly in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea,'' the statement noted.

It also pointed out that the pre-deployment training workshop cautiously welcomed the signs of decline in the rate of new infections in Liberia, but expressed concern over the situation in Sierra Leone which is now the most heavily affected.

Calls were made for concerted efforts to rebuild health systems in Africa so that countries can cope with similar outbreaks in future.

In addition, affected countries should avoid complacency in the recovery period, which could see the infection rates going up again.

''We took the fight against Ebola to the front line because we needed to fight it where it is. New infections are flattening out and we should soon start seeing a significant decline. We very much appreciate the solidarity shown by Africa in this fight,” remarked a representative of the AU Commission Chairperson, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma.

Meanwhile, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta was expected at a farewell session for the Kenyan contingent.

Also, AU Commission Deputy Chairperson Erastus Mwencha will be present to witness the event and to sign a memorandum of understanding between the Kenyan government and the AU on the deployment of the health personnel to the Ebola-hit countries.
-0- PANA MLJ/AR 8Jan2015

08 january 2015 18:48:15

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