African countries have expressed their commitment to pursue pharmaceutical traceability as a measure to strengthen healthcare system and ensure protection of the patient’s health.
Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, the NAFDAC Director-General, and Chair, Steering Committee African Medicines Regulatory Harmonisation (AMRH), said this was part of the national and regional strategic planning.
Adeyeye made the commitment on behalf of the countries on Tuesday at the ongoing 2nd African GS1 Healthcare Conference in Lagos.
She said that the pharmaceutical traceability plan would increase the patient’s safety through mitigating risk of entry of substandard and falsified medicines into the legitimate supply chain.
“We signify our intent to improve reliable access to essential commodities through supply chain efficiencies and stock availability.
“To provide data-driven visibility of health commodities in national supply chains and stronger interoperability with global supply chains.
“To promote trust in the public and private pharmaceutical sectors and healthcare system through supply chain security,” the NAFDAC director-general said.
She said that the long-term process would uphold the value of existing global supply chain standards in the pursuit of its interoperability.
Adeyeye acknowledged that different national efforts would be implemented at different rates to achieve the plan.
She said that the plan would establish robust health commodity procurement guidelines that mutually reinforce broader traceability.
Also, Mrs Margaret Ndomondo-Sigonda, Head, Health Programmes, African Union-New Partnership for Africa’s Development, (AU-NEPAD), said at national and regional level, countries would collaborate and work with the private sector and development partners.
Ndomondo-Sigonda said that they would create sustainable governance structure that were country-driven, collaborative and coordinated across the government agencies.
According to her, strengthen regulatory policies and procedures including standardised health labelling guidelines that reinforces pharmaceutical traceability goals.
Ndomondo-Sigonda said that the plan would boost investment in health system infrastructure that would enable verification, track and trace of pharmaceuticals through the supply chain.
The Nigeria News Agency reports that 35 African countries including Nigeria, Ghana, Malawi, Ethiopia, Egypt, amongst others signed onto the plan.
Edited by Olagoke Olatoye
Edited by Olagoke Olatoye
African children remain under siege from COVID-19: UNICEF
The direct and secondary impacts of the virus threaten to unravel the gains made for the poorest children across Africa, UNICEF said in a statement emailed to Xinhua.
While wealthier children are able to continue learning online, barely one in five households in Eastern and Southern Africa have internet access, according to UNICEF.
Eighty-four percent of the rural population – where the bulk of African learners reside – have no electricity, meaning online learning is not an option, said UNICEF.
Up to 16 million children in Africa are no longer accessing critical daily meals at school while violence is increasing, and more African children will fall into poverty, UNICEF said.
Prior to COVID-19, it was estimated that around three out of every four children in Africa are affected by multi-dimensional poverty. These children are deprived of the most basic things in life, like access to sufficient food and clean drinking water, going to school, being able to get medical help, sleeping in adequate shelter, going to the bathroom in a safe place, or living in an environment free of physical and emotional abuse.
The economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic could push up to 86 million more children into household poverty by the end of 2020, two thirds of these in Africa, according to analysis released by Save the Children and UNICEF.
Only 16 percent of children in Africa are covered by social protection programs, making it impossible for families to withstand financial shocks caused by COVID-19 and furthering the cycle of intergenerational poverty, said UNICEF.
While the challenges are immense, UNICEF said it is collectively achieving significant regional results, including 71 million people reached with messaging on COVID-19 prevention and how to access services, 10.8 million children supported with distance/home-based learning, more than two million people reached with hand-wash supplies and two million children and women reached with essential healthcare services in UNICEF-supported facilities.
African Child Day: CBAAC canvasses for implementation of child-friendly justice system
The Centre for Black and African Arts and Civilization (CBAAC) has called for the implementation of child-friendly justice system in Africa as cases of child-rape,labour and sexual violence increased across the continent.
The Director overseeing the office of the Director-General of CBAAC, Mrs. Osaro Osayande made the call in a statement, in commemoration of the Day of African Child (DAC) on Tuesday.
The theme for the 2020 edition of DAC is: “Access to a Child Friendly Justice System in Africa”.
Osayande also appealed to stakeholders at all levels to put effective measures in place to curb the rising cases of sexual violence in the country.
She said it was time for African leaders to work unanimously in implementing a child-friendly justice system to restore hope and confidence in every African child.
” CBAAC lends its voice against all forms of sexual violence, including rape, the centre is in support of the implementation of a Child-friendly justice system across the continent.
” Rape is a traumatic experience which causes psychological, emotional and physical pains to its victims, together with its adverse effect.
” We appeal to stakeholders at all levels to put in place effective measures to curb the rising cases of sexual violence in Nigeria,” she said.
Osayande said that as a cultural agency, CBAAC had in the past raised its voice against societal ills that negate the good tenets of African cultural values, through its numerous children programmes.
She urged parents and stakeholders to provide children with appropriate education as education was a human right and children deserved good education to be successful in life.
” We say No to Rape for a Better Africa!
” Indeed, this year’s DAC celebration calls for serious introspection and commitment towards addressing the numerous challenges facing children across the continent.
” We felicitate with African children on a special day like this,” she said.
She said that the centre will participate in the webinar meeting organised by the African Union Commission seeking to examine the elements of a child-friendly justice system in Africa.
Thousands of black school children took to the streets in Soweto, South Africa on June 16, 1976, to protest discriminatory educational policies by the South African government and to demand their right to be taught in their own language.
Hundreds of them were shot down in what became known as the “Sharpeville Massacre”, and in the two weeks of protests that followed, more than a hundred people were killed and more than a thousand injured.
Hence, the DAC is aimed at remembering these children and the brave action they took to claim their right as well as celebrate the entire Children of Africa who have endured one form of challenge or the other in the course of their growth.
Osayande said three decades down the line, children across Africa were still faced with varied forms of societal challenge that have hampered their safe growth and development.
She said among other societal ills, was the uncontrollable spate of sexual violence, manifesting in the form of rape, inflicted on the African child, including women and girls.
” These are sad realities particularly in Nigeria and some parts of the continent and this is the reason African leaders must unanimously implement a child-friendly justice system for the African children,” she said.
Edited By: Emmanuel Okara/Ali Baba-Inuwa (NAN)
African Energy Chamber calls for policy support for oil, gas sector
The African Energy Chamber on Monday urged its member countries to take immediate action to ensure that the entire year is not lost for oil and gas operations across the continent.
“Unless African countries engage with operators and investors and let them readjust their work programs, the only solution left for companies will be to declare force majeure or suspend any activity on their block,” said Nj Ayuk, Executive Chairman at the African Energy Chamber.
“Work programs adjustments is a major demand of the industry at the moment and key responsibilities need to be waived so exploratory and development drilling can only be deferred and not suspended or cancelled,” he added.
He called on the member countries to implement the Chamber’s Commonsense Energy Agenda and Guidelines for the Movement and Safety of Oil Workers. The former includes key measures for a short and medium-term recovery of the sector, the latter includes immediate actions and initiatives.
By taking swift action to allow the movement of oil workers and their safety, African countries can ensure that oil and gas operations continue safely and that the impact on exploration and production is minimized, said the Chamber.
S. African president calls on youth to fight against gender-based violence
With over 10 women who have been brutally killed in the country since the start of June, President Cyril Ramaphosa on Monday condemned their killings, saying the violence was shocking.
“Like all South Africans, I have been deeply disturbed by a surge over the last few days in the murder of young women at the hands of men. These are shocking acts of inhumanity that have no place in our society,” Ramaphosa said in his weekly newsletter.
The recent killing of young women across the country has left many dismayed.
The president called on the youth to play a leading role regarding the eradication of violence against women. He said that young people played a crucial role against apartheid government, noting today’s young people must fight again the society’s ills today.
“Youth-led civic activism, awareness raising and peer counselling are vital tools in our efforts to eradicate gender-based violence from society,” Ramaphosa said.
“While this needs society-wide action, I call on young men in particular to take up the struggle against gender-based violence.
“Unless we end the war that is being waged against South African women, the dream of a new society will remain elusive.” he said.