Category Archives: Lifestyle

G-20 Countries Pledge to Inject 5 Trillion USD into Global Economy

The G-20 nations on Thursday pledged a “united front” in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic, and said they were injecting 5 trillion USD into the global economy to counter the impact of the crisis.

“Combating this pandemic calls for a transparent, robust, coordinated, large-scale and science-based global response in the spirit of solidarity,” the G20 said in a statement after an emergency online summit.

“We are strongly committed to presenting a united front against this common threat,” AFP reported.

The group of 20 most industrialized nations said they were injecting over 5 trillion USD into the global economy “to counteract the social, economic and financial impacts of the pandemic”. 

“The magnitude and scope of this response will get the global economy back on its feet and set a strong basis for the protection of jobs and the recovery of growth,” the statement said.

As concerns mount for poorer countries with little or no access to capital markets or adequate health facilities, the International Monetary Fund and World Bank have urged the G-20 to support its call for governments to put debt payments on hold.

The group pledged to work swiftly with the IMF, the World Health Organization and regional banks to deploy a “robust” financial package to support developing nations.

On the fight against the novel coronavirus, the leaders committed to a number of measures including sharing research and data, strengthening health systems, and expanding manufacturing capacity to meet demand for medical supplies.  

“To safeguard the future, we commit to strengthen national, regional, and global capacities to respond to potential infectious disease outbreaks,” the statement said.

Due to the Covid-19 outbreak a traditional in-person meeting of the major international economies, the G20, has gone online.

Source: Ethiopia News agency

Countries Urged to Use ‘Second Window of Opportunity’ to Avert COVID-19 | Ethiopian News Agency

Addis Ababa  World Health Organization (WHO) Director General, Dr. Tedros Adhanom urged countries to use the second window opportunity to suppress and stop transmission of COVID-19.

The pandemic continues to take a massive toll not just on health, but on so many parts of life, he stated, adding that “we have overcome many pandemics and crises before. We will overcome this one too.”

“Already we have lost more than 16,000 lives. We know we will lose more; how many more will be determined by the decisions we make and the actions we take now,” Tedros articulated.

Many countries, at significant social and economic cost, have introduced unprecedented measures including closing schools and businesses, cancelling sporting events and asking people to stay home and stay safe in order to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Asking people to stay at home and shutting down movement is buying time and reducing the pressure on health systems, the Director-General said, and noted “but on their own, these measures will not extinguish epidemics.”

The World Heal Organization recommended six measures as the best way to suppress and stop transmission so that the virus doesn’t re-surge after restrictions lifted.

Accordingly, WHO proposed the following measures including expanding, train and deploy health care and public health workforce, implementation of a system to find every suspected case at community level and to ramp up the production, capacity and availability of testing.

Furthermore, the organizations suggested the identification, adaptation and equip facilities that will use to treat and isolate patients, developing a clear plan and process to quarantine contacts as well as refocusing the whole of government on suppressing and controlling COVID-19.

Moreover, he underscored “aggressive measures to find, isolate, test, treat and trace are not only the best and fastest way out of extreme social and economic restrictions-they are also the best way to prevent them.”

More than 150 countries and territories still have fewer than 100 cases, Tedros stated.

“By taking the same aggressive actions now, these countries have the chance to prevent community transmission and avoid some of the more severe social and economic costs seen in other countries,” he noted.

In related news UN Secretary-General António Guterres launched major humanitarian appeal to keep COVID-19 from ‘circling back around the globe’.

The launched massive humanitarian appeal of 2 billion USD is to confront the unprecedented worldwide challenge posed by COVID-19, mitigate its impact, particularly on fragile countries with weak health systems.

Source: Ethiopia News agency

UNICEF Pledges Immunization, Basic Health Care Support to Worst Affected Countries

Addis Ababa  The United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) is committed to supporting basic health care and immunization needs in the worst affected countries, and to doing so in a way that limits the risk of COVID-19 transmission, UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore said. 

In her statement, Henrietta Fore said the COVID-19 pandemic is overstretching health services around the world as health workers are diverted to support the response.

Flight cancellations and trade restrictions by countries have severely constrained access to essential medicines, including vaccines, the executive director noted.

As the pandemic progresses, critical life-saving services, including immunization, will likely be disrupted, especially in Africa, Asia and the Middle East where they are sorely needed.

In all these, children from the poorest families in countries affected by conflicts and natural disasters are at the greatest risk.

Therefore, Fore said, “We are particularly concerned about countries such as Afghanistan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Somalia, the Philippines, Syria and South Sudan that are battling measles, cholera or polio outbreaks while responding to COVID-19 cases.”

At a time like this, these countries can ill-afford to face additional outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases, she stressed.

UNICEF is therefore providing greater support to governments to continue the supply of vaccines during this pandemic.

According to her,  governments may have to temporarily postpone preventive mass vaccination campaigns in many places in the days to come in order to ensure that the delivery of immunization services does not contribute to COVID-19 spread, and to follow recommendations on physical distancing.

UNICEF strongly recommends that all governments begin rigorous planning now to intensify immunization activities once the COVID-19 pandemic is under control.

She underscored that “immunization remains a life-saving health intervention. As the world’s biggest buyer and supplier of vaccines, UNICEF will continue to play a pivotal role in supporting governments’ current and future immunization efforts.

Source: Ethiopia News agency

PM Urges Strengthened Preparedness, Strict Adherence to Health Guidelines

Addis Ababa  Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has called for strengthening the level of preparedness and strict adherence to health guidelines and other measures in order to combat the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19 ). 

This is the time for Ethiopians to redirect their energy from panic, fear and worry towards purposeful contribution, the prime minister wrote on his Facebook today.

“As the global community is gripped by the uncertainty COVID-19 has brought about, one thing that is certain is that our level of preparedness and strict adherence to health guidelines and other measures drawn, will determine how we cope and overcome,” he noted.  

According to him, the establishment of the National Resource Mobilization Committee to oversee the pooling of financial and non-financial resources is one of the measures of preparedness for the worst case scenario.

At the Federal level, quarantine, isolation, and treatment centers have been identified and equipping them with the needed materials is in the pipeline. He added that regional governments are following suit.

“This is the time for us to redirect our energy from panic, fear and worry towards purposeful contribution, by pooling whatever resources we have for a national emergency stockpile,” he urged.

Abiy further stated that bank accounts and SMS systems have been set up for anyone to contribute monetarily. A food bank is in the works for our hardworking farmers and producers to donate food supplies.

 “Fully equipping our quarantine, isolation and treatment centers with materials is also needed, as are other consumer goods for the most vulnerable,” he stated.

The prime minister finally called on Ethiopians to demonstrate that we confront adversity by coming together as a nation. “Each of us has a unique contribution to make as well as a responsibility to the home we call Ethiopia!” Source: Ethiopia News agency

New Ambassadors Designated to Different Countries

Addis Ababa  Ministry of Foreign Affairs has announced today the placement of the 15 ambassadors appointed by President Sahlework Zewdie at the end of February. 

According to the spokesperson of Ministry of Foreign Affairs the ambassadors designated are the following:

1. Berhanu Tsegaye – Ambassador to Australia  

2. Yalem Tsegay – Ambassador to Cuba.  

3. Hirut Zemene – Ambassador to Belgium

4. Markos Tekle- Ambassador to Egypt  

5. Bacha Gina – Ambassador to Morocco

6. Yibeltal Aemero – Ambassador to Sudan

7. Mihretab Mulugeta – Ambassador to Eritrea

8. Nebiat Getachew – Ambassador to Algeria, and

9. Teferi Meles – Ambassador to Britain

In addition, the following are assigned:

1. Adgo Amsaya – Deputy Chief of Mission in Stockholm, Sweden

2. Jemal Beker – Consul General in Manama, Bahrain    

3. Abdu Yasin –  Consul General in Jedda , Saudi Arabia  

4. Legese Geremew – Deputy Chief of Mission in Ottawa, Canada

5. Eyerusalem Amdemariam – Consul General in Dubai, United Arab Emirates   

6. Shibru Mamo – Consul General in Minnesota, USA

Source: Ethiopia News agency