Ebola gets a special envoy: United Nations’ boss appoints David Nabarro

by Kolapo Olapoju

Ban Ki-Moon, the United Nation’s Secretary General has appointed David Nabarro as the Special Envoy for Ebola, and Anthony Banbury as the Special Representative and Head of the United Nations Missions for Ebola response (UNMEER).

The double appointment comes on the heels of the unanimous adoption of Security Council resolution 2177 (2014) on the Ebola outbreak and consultations with Dr Margaret Chan, Director- General of World Health Organisation.

Nabarro has over 39 years experience in public health, nutrition and development work at country, regional and global levels, while Banbury has 25 years experience in political peacekeeping and emergency manger roles in several regions and organizations.

Nabarro is expected to provide strategic and policy direction for a greatly enhanced international response and galvanize essential support for affected communities and countries.

According to a statement released by the United Nation’s department of public information, the UNMEER will provide operational framework and unity of purpose to ensure that rapid, effective and coherent action is taken to stop the Ebola outbreak. Another of its objectives is also to treat the infected, ensure essential services is provided, and prevent the spread of the disease to other countries currently unaffected.

Nabarro and Banbury are expected to work closely with the governments in the regions affected by the Ebola virus disease.

Meanwhile Ki-Moon will convene a high level meeting on Thursday, 25 September, to discuss the response to the EVD outbreak. The meeting is expected to bring together global leaders to focus international attention to combat the outbreak of the disease.

The Ebola virus disease hit the West African sub-region of the African continent earlier in the year, and on Monday, 22 September, the World Health Organization announced that the overall death toll of the recent and deadliest case of the Ebola virus disease in West Africa, has risen to 2,793 out of 5,762 cases.

The health body also announced that Nigeria and Senegal havs successfully contained the virus, with Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone still having hundreds of cases.

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