The COVID-19 pandemic is wreaking havoc in Africa and is forcing African governments to reflect on and worry about the capacity of their health systems and structures—many of which are weak—to meet the challenges posed by the pandemic.
The Vice Chair of the Board of Governors of ACBF and Minister of Economy, Planning and Regional Development of Cameroon, Hon. Alamine Ousmane MEY, made this call at the virtual High-Level Brainstorming Session organized by ACBF as he intervened on how Africa should take advantage of its local pharmacopeia and other abundant potential solutions on the continent.
Hon. Mey underscored Africa’s pressing need to have a robust mechanism of surveillance and monitoring of diseases so that data is available for the current crisis and future calamities as well.
The Vice Chair also challenged African states to reflect on how economic and social challenges could be addressed within an environment of very narrow fiscal space.
“We urgently need to find the right solutions for the informal sector. This is where most of our population is. We have to find a solution for it, and ACBF can be of help,” the Vice Chair said.
The Minister underscored that post-COVID-19; -the new normal- would require adequate human resources, good infrastructure and strong organizational capacities, citing that ACBF had been instrumental in strengthening Africa’s human resource base in the past.
“The continent relies on the ACBF for strategies on finding a pathway to resolve the debt issue and mobilization of the much-needed financial resources. The continent will therefore have to work in solidarity and become cooperative. We need to pull together to access to medicines and equipment will be extremely difficult if we act individually,” the Vice Chair underscored.