The Economic Commission for Africa and the UN Communications Group last week handed over to the Government of Ethiopia, awareness materials to ensure ordinary citizens have access to timely and accurate information in the fight against the COVID-19 outbreak.
Over 40000 flyers and brochures were printed for distribution by relevant government entities.
Topics include emergency preparedness and response, the disease and its conditions, healthy living and safety, among others.
“We are honoured to partner with the Ethiopian Public Health Institute and the Ministry of Transport during this time of crisis,” said Ali Todaro, Chief of Conference Management Section at the ECA.
“The UN is working around the world to tackle the COVID-19 outbreak. We recognize that a positive outcome is only possible if the ordinary person is fully informed.”
Charles Ndungu, Chief of ECA’s Printing and Publishing Unit, added his voice, saying, “Every time one places a call in Ethiopia, they get an educational message about coronavirus prevention. But we all know that is not enough because not everyone has a cell phone. The ECA is happy to be playing its small part in this massive fight against the deadly virus that is set change our world as we know it, if we do not act fast.”
Mr. Ndungu said he was grateful to all the staff “who have been putting in extra hours to make this possible”.
Teshome Kifle, also from the Printing and Publishing Unit said, “We all know that knowledge changes attitudes. What we have been seeing around the continent was an inauspicious attitude toward the coronavirus from our people. Our hope is that these flyers and pamphlets will go a long way in ensuring people take this pandemic seriously to protect themselves, their families and colleagues,” said Mr. Kifle.
For her part, Ethiopia’s Transport Minister, Dagmawit Moges, thanked ECA’s Executive Secretary Vera Songwe and her team for providing the government with the informative brochures about COVID-19.
“I look forward to joining forces to utilize our collective capacity towards combating this pandemic,” she said on Twitter.
The government, working in partnership with the WHO, other UN agencies and the private sector, is implementing other basic measures to increase awareness and prevent the spread of COVID-19 with the health ministry providing regular updates on all media, including through megaphones and in sign language.
Meanwhile, Ethiopia has partnered with the Jack Ma Foundation and other partners to help distribute Corona Virus testing kits, masks, face shields, and protective suits to the 54 countries on the Continent. Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed is managing the logistics and distribution of the supplies.