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General News of Saturday, 19 June 2021


Coronavirus: Support efforts by West African countries to manufacture vaccines - Akufo-Addo

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo opened the 59th Ordinary Session of ECOWAS President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo opened the 59th Ordinary Session of ECOWAS

• President Akufo-Addo has been addressing the 59th ECOWAS Ordinary Summit in Accra

• He called for support for countries in the region who want to produce their own coronavirus vaccines

• The Summit is being attended by 15 Heads of State, excluding Mali

Ghana’s president and Chairman of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has applauded the frantic efforts being made by some member countries to manufacture their own vaccines, while urging support for same.

The president, speaking at the opening session of the 59th ECOWAS Ordinary Summit in Accra, said that this move is laudable as it aims at tackling the situation at hand instead of waiting on foreign aid.

He explained that the coronavirus pandemic has devastated a lot of economies in the sub-region, calling for the need to encourage collaborations among countries in the region to deal with the situation, reports

“All the countries in the region have taken delivery of some vaccines, supplemented by procurement by some member states. I thank foreign friends of the community who have contributed to funding the initiative.

“We note, however, that the quantities received are wholly insufficient. We must thus continue to work on the purchase and production of vaccines in our region. We have to encourage members of our community such as Nigeria, Senegal, and my own country Ghana who are making the efforts to produce their own vaccines. We cannot afford to be naked the next time,” he said.

This 59th ECOWAS session is deliberating among other things, the pertinent issues threatening the peace and stability of the West African sub-region, as well as proffer solutions to them.

Fifteen Heads of State except Mali, which has been suspended from the regional bloc following the recent political upheavals in that country, are attending the summit.

They include the President of Liberia, George Manneh Weah, President of Guinea, Alpha Conde, Burkinabe President, Roch Marc Christian Kabore, Sierra Leonean President, Julius Maada Bio, President of Guinea Bissau, Umaro Sissoco Embalo and President of The Gambia, Adama Barrow.

A former Nigeria president, Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, who is the ECOWAS Special Envoy mediating Mali’s political crisis, is also attending the summit.