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Politics of Monday, 23 March 2020

Source: Peace FM

We can’t fight coronavirus with your 'unpatriotic' team- Chairman Wontumi to John Mahama

The Ashanti Regional Chairman of the New Patriotic Party, Mr. Bernard Antwi-Boasiako, has warned former President Mahama to put a stop to the “unnecessary interventions” he slips in, anytime President Akufo-Addo makes a serious statement about measures his government is setting in place to fight the Coronavirus.

Shortly after President Akufo-Addo appointed Dr. Anarfi Asamoa-Baah as the Presidential Coordinator for the Government’s coronavirus Response Programme, former President Mahama quickly responded that his party has also assembled a technical team to combat the coronavirus pandemic.

The flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress revealed that the team is made up of experts from the various fields that are required to implement a national action plan on COVID-19.

He revealed that some members of NDC’s Covid-19 response team include former Minister for Health, Alex Segbefia; Public Health Expert and Former Dean of School of Public Health, UHAS, Professor Margaret Kweku; Interdisciplinary Medicine Expert, Dr. Vida Yarkong and Senior Medical Consultant and former General Secretary of the Ghana Medical Association, Dr. Jehu Appiah.

But Mr. Bernard Antwi-Boasiako responded that as the government put in measures to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, former President Mahama could earn himself some respect “if he would remain mute and stop countering President Akufo-Addo anytime he addresses the nation.”

He called on former President Mahama to spare the government the blushes since his actions over the period have proven that he works with an “unpatriotic team”.

The NPP Chairman popularly known as Chairman Wontumi, described the counter-reactions from the former President as “unnecessary jokes” and advised him to rather stick to the guild lines President Akufo-Addo has laid down in the wake of the pandemic.

The President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has appointed Dr.AnarfiAsamoa-Baah, a former Deputy Director-General of the World Health Organisation (WHO), as the Presidential Coordinator for the Government’s Coronavirus Response Programme.

In that role, Dr.Asamoa-Baah will be President Akufo-Addo’s point man for the response effort, and will be responsible for pulling together and coordinating all aspects of the response programme by Government.

Dr. Asamoa-Baah comes to the job with a suitable wealth of experience such as:

-supervising the creation of a new Health Emergency Programme in WHO following the Ebola outbreak in 2014,

-leading WHO’s work in developing the Ebola vaccine,

-leading the team that developed a formal process of quality control for the training and verification of Emergency Medical Teams,

-providing leadership for the development of the Pandemic Influenza Preparedness Framework in 2011,

-leading the development of WHO R+D Blueprint to cut the time needed to develop and manufacture candidate products from years to months,

-chairing the WHO Senior Management Committee that developed strategies and plans for the control of epidemics (Ebola, Merco, Zika ,and Famine),

-leading the global efforts to develop a streamlined and integrated strategy for Neglected Tropical Diseases and in the process helped to coin the name “Neglected Tropical Disease”,

-supervising the technical development of a rapid and reliable diagnostic test suitable for use in resource restrained settings for sleeping sickness and Chagas disease,

-supervising the mapping of NTDs in sub-Saharan Africa, pinpointing areas of endemicity and allowing a much more targeted approach to mass drug administration and the surveillance needed to oversee its impact,

-developing technical strategies for the management of diseases with epidemic potential,

-working to establish vaccine stockpiles for meningitis, smallpox, cholera and yellow fever; and

-working to establish protocols for the management of hemorrhagic fevers.

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