PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa has described the Covid-19 pandemic as a threat to world peace and security, calling on African countries to revamp their health delivery systems.
Addressing other African leaders during the virtual meeting of the Aswan Forum on Sustainable Peace and Development, Mnangagwa said countries must work together to deal with post Covid-19 effects. The forum is an initiative of Egypt President Abdel Fattah El Sisi.
With most African leaders and nationals rushing to India and other developed countries in the West for medical attention, this is no longer possible due to the travel restrictions put in place because of the pandemic.
Most health delivery systems across the continent have also been severely overwhelmed by the huge number of patients bedridden by the deadly virus. As a result of the challenges the continent has faced, Mnangagwa called for a great need for African countries to relook and revamp their health sectors.
“It is paramount that we relook at our respective national health infrastructure and health financing models. The need to capacitate the Africa Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is urgent. “Accordingly, a review of the statute founding the agency must be undertaken in accordance with the decision of the 34th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government.
“Zimbabwe, therefore, calls for the urgent implementation of the Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Plan for Africa, to enable research and the production of drugs on the continent. “There is now a more compelling case for our nations within the AU to ratify the agreement for the establishment of the African Medicines Agency (AMA),” Mnangagwa added.
Meanwhile, Mnangagwa said African countries must make sure there is peace on the continent. “We need to live up to our pledge to silence the guns on our continent. To do so, sustainable peace and development in Africa in the post Covid-19 era will be largely dependent on our collective commitment to implement the conventions, treaties, protocols and agreements already adopted by our continental body.
“Specific strategic tasks envisaged under the revised African Pence and Security Architecture (APSA) Roadmap must be implemented. “These include conflict prevention, crisis/conflict management, post-conflict reconstruction and peace building, as well as coordination and building partnerships by the African Union Commission (AUC), and the Regional Economic Communities (RECS).
“Procrastination over the strengthening of the African Standby Force (ASF) cannot continue,” he added.