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The East African : Oct 27th 2014
26 BEHIND THE HEADLINES China lags in contributions to Ebola fight ICC warns Kenya govt on information leaks S.Sudan leaders take responsibility AU investigates Amisom allegations The EastAfrican OUTLOOK OCTOBER 25-31,2014 T I T B I T S The News: China’s corporations and billionaires have lagged behind in contributing to fighting the Ebola epidemic in West Africa, despite multiple economic ties to the region, the World Food Programme has said. The Lowdown: China has only contributed about $40 million in aid towards fighting the disease, including $6million to the World Food Programme. “Where are the Chinese billionaires and their potential impact? This is the time that they could really have such a huge impact,” said Brett Rierson, WFP representative in China. “You can ask the same thing of the corporate sector, being the largest investors in West Africa right now. The News: The International Criminal Court (ICC) has warned Kenya’s government against leaking information from President Uhuru Kenyatta’s case to the media.. The Lowdown: The ICC’s Trial Chamber specifically referred to the leaking of details of a confidential request from the ICC judges to help freeze or seize President Kenyatta’s assets. Details of the request surfaced in Kenyan media in April and September this year, in what the court described as “a pattern of information contained in confidential filings being leaked to the media, in some cases even before the filings have been notified to the chamber.” The News: South Sudan President Salva Kiir and his arch-rival, rebel chief Dr Riek Machar, have accepted mutual responsibility for a 10month civil war in which thousands of people have been killed. The Lowdown: “The parties acknowledge a collective responsibility for the crisis in South Sudan that has taken a great toll of the lives and property of our people,” said the text of a deal signed by Kiir and his sacked former deputy Dr Machar in the Tanzanian town of Arusha. It was the first time the bitter rivals had met since signing a ceasefire in August in Ethiopia, which like three previous agreements swiftly collapsed. The News: The African Union has authorised an investigation into allegations that African Union Mission in Somalia (Amisom) soldiersraped women and girls as young as 12 and traded food for sex in Somalia. The Lowdown: The team will “conduct investigations into the specific allegations of sexual exploitation and abuse made against particularly the Ugandan and Burundian contingents. Amisom previously described the allegations as “isolated” incidents and called the HRW report “unbalanced and unfair.” The probe will be complete by November 30 with a report to be submitted to AU Commission Chair Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma. 200 One in 200 infections leads to irreversible paralysis (usually in the legs). Among those paralysed, 5 to 10 per cent die when their breathing muscles become immobilised. 1988 In 1988, when the Global Polio Eradication Initiative was formed, polio paralysed more than 350, 000 people a year. Since then, case numbers have decreased by more than 99 per cent (with only 406 polio cases reported in 2013). Polio still a menace According to the World Health Organisation, polio continues to paralyse children. While polio is a distant memory in most of the world, the disease still exists in some places and mainly affects children under five years of age. There are three strains of wild poliovirus, none of which can survive for long periods outside the human body. Type 2 wild poliovirus was eradicated in 1999 and case numbers of type 3 wild poliovirus are down to the lowest-ever levels. 640,000 The Global Polio Eradication Initiative assists countries in carrying out surveillance for polio and large-scale vaccination rounds. When India was still polio-endemic, there were 640,000 vaccination booths, 2.3 million vaccinators, 200 million doses of vaccine, 6.3 million ice packs, 191 million homes visited and 172 million children immunized: all this in just one round of the national immunisation days. Every child must be vaccinated to eradicate polio Graphic: Felix Miring’u. Source: WHO Polio can spread from these ‘endemic’ countries to infect children in other countries with less-than-adequate vaccination coverage. Unlike most diseases, polio can be completely eradicated Underpinning the effort is a global network of more than 20 million volunteers worldwide who have collectively immunized nearly 3 billion children over the past 20 years. There are three “endemic” countries which have never stopped transmission of polio The three countries are Afghanistan, Nigeria and Pakistan. They face a range of challenges such as insecurity, weak health systems and poor sanitation. There are two forms of vaccine available to ward off polio — oral polio vaccine (OPV) and inactivated polio vaccine (IPV). Because OPV is an oral vaccine, it can be administered by anyone, even volunteers.
Oct 20th 2014
Nov 3rd 2014