The African business community has pledged $28.5 million (about Rwf20 billion) toward the fight against Ebola in West Africa.
The intervention comes as Ebola continues to ravage communities in West Africa. More than 13,000 people have been infected while 4,900 lives have been lost since the outbreak.
The gesture by the business community during the African Business Roundtable, organised by the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the African Union in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on Saturday, is the right approach to solving Africa’s problems and should be emulated by other stakeholders.
Pooling resources whenever one part of the continent is affected will ensure that Africa’s strategic interests and development are not affected.
It’s obvious that any problem in one part of Africa could affect the entire continent, especially in terms of trade. It also affects the political and social-economic terrain of the entire continent.
This kind of approach should be applied in dealing with other challenges, the continent is facing, like poverty and insecurity in some regions.
A lesson we can learn from the Ebola outbreak response is that Africa needs a continental disaster fund whose objective will be to respond to emergencies like disasters, which individual countries struggle to manage on their own.
Pooling resources will help Africa manage disasters and other problems which may break out on a large scale better. Other leaders and decision makers should emulate the approach of the business community. We should not always wait for the international community to come to our rescue. As a continent we should be prepared to efficiently address challenges in our midst.