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General News of Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Source: GNA

Mayors appeal for debt cancellation for Ebola affected countries

The Global Alliance of Mayors and Leaders from Africa and of African Descent have appealed to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the Word Bank to cancel all debts owed them by Ebola affected countries.

This was contained in a Communiqué issued after a three-day conference in Accra and the third meeting of the Alliance of over 80 countries, chaired by its President, Dr Alfred Oko Vanderpuije, Accra Metropolitan Chief Executive (MCE).

The Communiqué, dubbed; ‘The Accra Accord on Ebola’’ was to help address serious economic implications facing the affected countries under the theme; “Sustainable Human Development and Economic Empowerment for Africa and the Diaspora.’’

It said there was the need to ensure an informed communication about Africa and people of African descent and develop effective partnerships among municipalities and other stake holders to tackle economic and social development issues.

The Communiqué expressed appreciation to the United Nations Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon, for his efforts to mobilise the international community for resources to remedy the Ebola situation of the world.

It noted with keen interest the initiative of President John Dramani Mahama as the Chairman of ECOWAS to visit the affected countries - Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone - to support efforts at fighting the disease.

The Communiqué expressed appreciation to the African Renaissance and Diaspora Network, Ford Foundation, the business community in Ghana and the United Nations Programme on HIV and AIDS for their tremendous support to the conference.

Ms Hannah Tetteh, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, advised the participants to create an opportunity for black people to “tell our own stories.’’

She said, “We have to achieve the Millennium Development Goals through a look alike of our cities to change people’s lives and create the enabling environment’’.

Ms Tetteh said 52 per cent of the population now lived in urban areas, adding that the huge urbanisation challenges needed the Alliance leaders to find ways of sharing experiences for the way forward before it was too late.

Nii Laryea Afotey Agbo, Greater Accra Regional Minister, urged the Alliance to bring the media on board to tell the stories of Africa.

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