AFRICANGLOBE – Ethiopia’s prime minister says African countries should stop relying on aid from Western states in the fight against Ebola in West Africa and should do more to overcome the problem on their own.
“We should show that there is solidarity within the African countries” in fighting Ebola, Hailemariam Desalegn said on Monday, urging the African states to send medical staff to the areas affected by the disease.
“We have to show that Africans also are there for Africans. We should try our best to bring African solutions to African problems,” Desalegn added.
Last week, Ethiopia dispatched 187 health volunteers to Sierra Leone and Liberia, two countries badly affected by Ebola. It was the biggest African medical team sent to combat the epidemic. According to Desalegn, another 1,000 volunteers will be sent soon.
Some African countries, however, are unwilling to send volunteers to the Ebola-hit regions because of either a lack of financial resources or fears that they are not ready to treat those who potentially return infected with the virus.
The Ebola outbreak has killed 7,518 people in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea – the three West Africa countries hardest hit by the disease, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Monday.
Ebola is a form of hemorrhagic fever, whose symptoms are diarrhea, vomiting, and bleeding. The virus spreads through direct contact with infected blood, feces, or sweat. It can be also spread through sexual contact or the unprotected handling of contaminated corpses.