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Obasanjo, others mobilise home-grown resources to tackle COVID-19 challenges

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AFRICA’S inability to harness available resources to provide home-grown solutions to their health challenges has left the continent underdevelopment.

  Former President, Olusegun Obasanjo stated this at the launch of the Coalition for Dialogue on Africa (CoDA) Independent Task Team on Equitable and Universal Access to Vaccines and Vaccination in Africa.

  The launch, which was held  at Igbinedion University Teaching Hospital (IUTH), Okada,  Edo State, had in attendance medical experts, researchers and policymakers from nations across the continent of Africa.

  CoDA is an initiative of the Africa Union created to discuss and begin the process of vaccine development and distribution within the continent.

  Obasanjo, who is the chair of the CoDA’s Board of Directors, said Africa’s main challenges could not be attributed to lack of funds or resources but the use of all within its disposal to proffer sustainable solutions.

  Represented by Abdoulaye Bathily, former special representative of the UN Secretary-General for Central Africa, he said the African region must harness available resources to develop home-grown solutions.

  “I have always believed that Africa’s main challenge is not the lack of funds or resources. Our main challenge is the inability to harness available resources to provide customised home-grown solutions needed to address the challenges we see across the continent,” Obasanjo said.

  Other members of the CoDA team are Deputy Chairperson, African Union Commission, Monique Nsanzabaganwa, Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, Deputy Chancellor of Igbinedion University Okada, Lucky Igbinedion, Chief Medical Director of Igbinedion University Teaching Hospital (IUTH), Godwin Bazuaye and Chairman, Pan African Manufacturers Association, Mansur Ahmed.

  Obasanjo lamented that many researchers, doctors, nurses and other healthcare workers are constantly being drawn out of Africa to serve in other continents. He said this had left the region underdeveloped.

  He said; “They use their intellect to serve the needs of other continents, and most times without being duly credited or acknowledged for their intellectual investments, while our health systems are underdeveloped.

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