Former President of Liberia, Mrs. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has sent a solidarity message and a passionate appeal to world leaders, international organizations and other stakeholders to fight the deadly Coronavirus disease otherwise known as COVID-19.
According to BBC reports monitored by this paper on March 30, 2020, Mrs. Sirleaf was speaking against the background of sharing her experience during the outbreak of the Ebola disease in Liberia and the two other Mano River Union Countries of Guinea and Sierra Leone in 2014 and how the world can learn from the lesson thereof to combat and defeat the disease that has touched virtually all countries on earth.
The ex-President told the BBC in an interview that, when the Ebola disease had already claimed the lives of 2,000 Liberians, and infections were growing exponentially, she wrote a letter to the world on October 19, 2014, pleading for the mobilization of resources and demanded a show of global unity to avert what was feared would be a worldwide pandemic. She said as a result of the appeal a mass mobilization of resources led by the UN, the world Health Organization the US and other countries followed which led to the defeat of Ebola and that the participation of these countries and institutions made possible the availability of effective experimental vaccines and antivirus thanks to the collaboration of the best Scientific minds around the world.
Mrs. Sirleaf who still enjoys massive International recognition and respect as the first democratically elected female president in Africa said she is appealing with an acute awareness that while African nations have so far been spared the worst, it is only a matter of time until it batters the continent which is the last prepared to fight the Coronavirus disease.
Comparing the global Coronavirus response strategy to that of Ebola, she said:
“Watching from my home in Monrovia, what most encourages today is the opening up of expertise and the fact that knowledge, scientific discovery, equipment, medicines and personnel are being shared.
It is happening within nations, and increasingly across international borders; an indispensable, albeit delayed reaction, that every person, in every nation, needs to do their part.
This realization led to our turning point of disease control in West Africa. In Liberia, we emerged resilient from the Ebola epidemic, and stronger as a society, with health protocols in place that are enabling us to manage the COVID-19 disease. I fervently believe this is the path we are all on.”
Since the outbreak of the COVID-19, in China, it has been spreading widely across the globe with the United States, Italy and Spain highly affected, killing thousands of people and sending economies into recession. So far Liberia has recorded 14 cases with no fatality reported.