Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the Director-General of the World Health Organization(WHO) has congratulated President Paul Kagame for his effort to ensure early preparedness of the country to face Coronavirus and commitment to discussing with continental leaders the need to embrace battle of the pandemic selflessly.
“For months, African leaders have prepared for the arrival of COVID-19. Thank you, Paul Kagame for discussing the importance of early action at the country level and continental activation of a coalition of political & business leaders. United, to safeguard Africa,” Ghebreyesus said in a tweet today.
Rwanda registered the first case of COVID-19 on March 14, 2020 and the number has now reached 84 cases as of April 2, but no fatality.
From March 21 Rwanda introduced a two-week lockdown which has also been extended till midnight April 19, 2020 as health workers continue working day and night, to prevent new infections, to treat those affected, and keep the country safe.
During this lockdown, President Kagame took on the WHO Safe Hands Challenge to show how important hygiene can be in fighting the virus.
President Kagame challenged other presidents including; President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya, John Pombe Magufuli of Tanzania, President Felix Tshisekedi of Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa, President Macky Sall of Senegal, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva.
Recently, Rwanda launched support to the Rwandan community in all ways to beat COVID-19 following a Rwf50billion in liquid cash that was floated by the Rwanda National Bank to commercial banks to be able to lend and relax loan procedures on businesses directly affected by COVID-19.
The President has not stopped at Rwanda but moved to call for collective agenda in the fight against COVID-19. For example, seated at the Office of The President (Urugwiro Village) on March 27, he joined G20 Leaders In the virtual summit to discuss COVID-19.
Kagame who is the current Chairperson of the AUDA-NEPAD has solicited efforts from Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Ethiopian Premier Ahmed Abiy in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic.
Discussing with the two officials on the same date, he said it will take firm measures on various fronts to win COVID-19 battle.
Giving an example of Rwanda, recently, Kagame said that through the National Task Force led by the Prime Minister, Rwanda is working in collaboration with partners in the region and globally to manage this pandemic.
Some of these include the World Health Organization and in particular Dr Tedros and Jack Ma and his foundation- which donated over 1.5 million laboratory diagnostic test kits and over 100 tons of infection prevention and control commodities.
President Kagame remains positive that Rwandans have overcome many extraordinary challenges together and this COVID-19 too will be overcome.
“Our resilience and solidarity is needed now more than ever, to prevail in this struggle against coronavirus. And we have to win this fight,” he said, adding that the measures the country has taken are working.
“What we do today, will determine how quickly we can defeat this pandemic so that we can continue with our normal lives,” he said during national address aired on the national broadcaster on March 28.