- The World Health Organisation (WHO) has declared a major victory against
polio in Somalia.
Polio's eradication in the conflict-ridden country was as a result of
the untiring efforts of some 10,000 volunteers and health workers across
the Horn of Africa.
“Against a backdrop of widespread conflict, large population movements
and a dearth of functioning government infrastructure, transmission of
poliovirus in the country has been successfully stopped,” WHO delcared.
WHO and its partners, including the government Rotary International and
UNICEF, last year launched polio eradication efforts in Somalia.
Interestingly, no single case was reported since March 20007.
During the period, more than 1.8 million Somali children under five have
been repeatedly vaccinated.
“Somalia shows that when communities are engaged, children everywhere
can be reached,” Senior Health Advisor of UNICEF, Dr. Maritel Costales
Somalia had eradicated polio in 2002, only to be reinfected in 2005 by
poliovirus that originated from Nigeria.
The Regional Director of WHO's Eastern Mediterranean, Dr. Hussein
Gezairy said the "truly historic achievement shows that polio can be
eradicated everywhere, even in the most challenging and difficult
With the exception of four endemic countries - Afghanistan, India,
Nigeria and Pakistan - polio has been eradicated in the world.
The world health body urgently needs over US $500 million to fight
the disease in the endemic countries in next two years.
afrol News - It is called "financial inclusion", and it is a key government policy in Rwanda. The goal is that, by 2020, 90 percent of the population is to have and actively use bank accounts. And in only four years, financial inclusion has doubled in Rwanda.
afrol News - The UN's humanitarian agencies now warn about a devastating famine in Sudan and especially in South Sudan, where the situation is said to be "imploding". Relief officials are appealing to donors to urgently fund life-saving activities in the two countries.
afrol News - Fear is spreading all over West Africa after the health ministry in Guinea confirmed the first Ebola outbreak in this part of Africa. According to official numbers, at least 86 are infected and 59 are dead as a result of this very contagious disease.
afrol News - It is already a crime being homosexual in Ethiopia, but parliament is now making sure the anti-gay laws will be applied in practical life. No pardoning of gays will be allowed in future, but activist fear this only is a signal of further repression being prepared.
afrol News / Africa Renewal - Ethiopia's ambitious plan to build a US$ 4.2 billion dam in the Benishangul-Gumuz region, 40 km from its border with Sudan, is expected to provide 6,000 megawatts of electricity, enough for its population plus some excess it can sell to neighbouring countries.