Prez Mahama pushes for debt cancellation for Ebola stricken countries

President Mahama exchanges pleasantries with German officials.

The Chairman of Ecowas, President John Dramani Mahama has called on international donor bodies to cancel debts of all Ebola stricken countries to strengthen their chances of recovery.

Meanwhile, the United Nations (UN) has begun processes to approve the formation of an international crisis management team to curtail the spread of deadly diseases like Ebola in the future.

TV3’s Presidential Correspondent Edward Kwabi  says the President made the observation when German ministers for health and economic cooperation paid a courtesy call on him at the seat of government.

The visit was a follow up to President Mahama’s trip to Germany in January where he teamed up with German chancellor Angela Merkel to push for the formation of an international crisis body to curtail future outbreak of deadly diseases.

President Mahama said the UN has made some strides in approving the request.

“Just a few days ago, I was very pleased to receive a response from the UN Secretary General accepting our proposal and indicating that the UN was going to work with us to set up such a panel and they hope that we will assist to set up a better international crisis response system. I want to use the opportunity to thank Germany and all the international partners for their participation in the international response which has led to our successful fight against Ebola”.

The Ghanaian President also appealed to the various international bodies to cancel  debts of Ebola affected countries to fast track their economic recovery.

“Ebola has taken a very serious toll on them in terms of their economies. The World Bank says it has accounted for a reduction of 4.6 percent in GDP as a result of the outbreak. But the three most affected countries need the help of the international community and so one of the priorities will be to help them build a robust public health system. And then apart from that, they will need to be given some support in terms of debt write-offs in order that they can re-engineer the economies and bounce back on their feet”.

The two ministers said Germany would continue to partner Ghana in its developmental agenda. Meanwhile Liberia is few weeks away from being declared Ebola- free.

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