Ebola Virus Disease: Threat to International Peace Requires Coordinated International Response

first_imgThe World Health Organization (http://www.who.int/mediacentre/news/ebola/8-september-2014/en/#) notes exponential increase in Ebola, especially in Liberia where experts (http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2014/09/05/we_could_have_stopped_this_ebola_virus_world_health_organization) an infected person passes on the disease onto many more than the two and a half persons reported for Sierra Leone. Today, even those who blithely rejected the expert prognoses belatedly admit the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) as likely to eventuate in another internal war in Liberia. The Ebola epidemic rapidly consuming lives in West Africa – particularly in Liberia – could become a global pandemic besides devastating the sub-region. Article 39, Chapter VII, of the United Nations Charter mandates the Security Council to ‘determine the existence of any threat to the peace .. and .. make recommendations, or decide what measures shall be taken .. to maintain or restore international peace and security.’ Traditionally, this Article was used to address military threats and actions between and within states, asymmetric warfare, including terrorism, and their related consequences, such as refugee crises. More recent practice by the Council has expanded the definition of threats to international peace and security.By its resolution 1308 adopted on 17 July 2000, the Security Council, ‘[r]ecognizing that the spread of HIV/AIDS can have a uniquely devastating impact on all sectors and levels of society,’ and ‘[b]earing in mind [its] primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security,’ encouraged the development and strengthening of efforts to combat this and other diseases (see S/RES/1308 (2000). Repertory of Practice of United Nations Organs, Supplement No. 10 (2000-2009; also http://legal.un.org/repertory/art39/english/rep_supp10_vol3-art39_e_advance.pdf). Further, the United Nations Millennium Declaration adopted by the General Assembly in 2000 committed the Council to combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis (GA/RES/55/2 (2000).The breakthrough that paved the way for such determinations came on 31 January 1992 when the Security Council met for the first time ever at the level of heads of state and government. The members, within the framework of their commitment to the United Nations Charter, deliberated the topic: ‘The responsibility of the Security Council in the maintenance of international peace and security’. In so doing and ‘[i]n connection with its consideration of thematic and country-related issues, the Council .. expanded the definition of threats to international peace and security to include .. non-military sources of instability in the economic, social, humanitarian and ecological fields’ (Practice of United Nations Organs Supplement Nos. 7-9 (1985-1999); ¶ 2. http://legal.un.org/repertory/art39/english/rep_supp7-9_vol3-art39_e_advance.pdf) and pledged their commitment to international law and to the United Nations Charter as well as reaffirmed their commitment to the collective security system of the Charter to deal with threats to peace.Liberia’s parlous health-care system and the disparate, uncoordinated and sometimes ill-conceived responses to this crisis cry out for coordinated leadership which only can be accessed under a United Nations Security Council Resolution. The Security Council must make the determination required of it and then direct or prod relevant UN departments, specialized agencies, affiliated programmes and member states to act. The result should be a massive coordinated humanitarian effort involving: military logistics capability; health care expertise; fund raising and transparent management activities; accountability for all assets; sensitization of affected populations; and cooperation with local authorities, neighbouring affected and unaffected countries, and regional organizations.A recent article by the Pulitzer Prize-winning science writer and senior fellow for global health at the U.S. Council on Foreign Relations Laurie Garrett, who chronicled the 1976 Ebola outbreak in Yambuku, the Democratic Republic of Congo and who was at Kikwit in 1995 during the Ebola outbreak there, outlines a good framework for implementing this campaign (http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2014/09/05/we_could_have_stopped_this_ebola_virus_world_health_organization ) She envisions a global response on the order of the rescue and relief effort undertaken in the wake of the 2004 tsunami that devastated Aceh, Indonesia. The United States alone deployed 12,600 military personnel, including its entire Pacific fleet and every Navy hospital in the region. Countries most affected by the tsunami received about US$5 billion dollars in aid, according to a World Bank estimate.The Secretary-General has already observed that, in the context of the Ebola emergency, the United Nations Mission in Liberia will continue to facilitate the provision of humanitarian assistance, including helping to provide the necessary security conditions’ in accordance with its initial mandate. (Letter dated 28 August 2014 from the Secretary-General addressed to the President of the Security Council, S/2014/644 (2 September 2014) We perceive the Secretary General’s letter as providing the impetus for the Security Council to act in the manner contemplated above. A mandate for a new mission or a reconfigured UNMIL would authorize a central management to coordinate all responses, including that envisaged by the United States in deploying its military forces to facilitate logistics and other needs.The action would ensure that adequate funds are raised and assets secured, that they are properly accounted for and utilized and that all the appropriate health, logistics, security and other responses are implemented. This mission would also coordinate with the Government of Liberia and its sub-divisions to address the economic, health, social and political impact of the EVD to prevent the looming calamity. One of the ways to do this would be to take over the health workers’ payroll and make payments directly to those in the forefront of the battle. Another way would be to help carry out the long term improvement of the health care system by investing, not only in infrastructure, but also in the training of personnel by strengthening educational institutions and providing bursaries for deserving students. Yet another way would be to help in the creation of a wildlife tracking entity to provide early warning of outbreaks in animals that pose a risk to human populations.The Liberian government should support the foregoing for, far from undermining any notions of sovereignty, this approach would identify a silver lining in this catastrophe without attempting to manufacture a silver bullet. The effective initiation of governance reform would prevent crises in education and food security. Such action would honor the memory of Liberia’s presence in San Francisco in 1945. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Quarterback deficient Redskins say they discussed Kaepernick; why he didn’t get a tryout

first_imgWashington Redskins head coach Jay Gruden said team personnel discussed giving quarterback Colin Kaepernick a tryout, the Associated Press reported Tuesday.Before you get all fired up, it’s not happening.“Not a lot of time to really get a brand new quarterback and new system installed and taught in a couple of days of practice,” Gruden told the AP. “So he’s been talked about and discussed, but we’ll probably go a different direction.”Hail to the Redskins. Mark Geragos, …last_img

Help for ‘over 14 000 small firms’

first_imgIn-house advisors In the Eastern Cape, for example, a number of municipalities had donated buildings and paid for rent so that Seda centres could be set up there. Lupuwana said the key to widening the agency’s support on a limited budget would be the partnerships it could forge with key partners such as provincial and local governments. Briefing a National Council of Provinces committee in Cape Town this week, Seda CEO Hlonela Lupuwana said that out of those, 46 695 clients’ needs were assessed and 14 373 were helped. Last week, a group of 25 Seda business advisers embarked on a seven-day visit to Taiwan, where they were expected to gather more diagnostic skills and training on helping business owners. Another group of 25 advisers were expected to visit Brazil later this year, Lupuwana said, adding that the visits were a cost-effective way of supporting advisers as Seda only had to pay for “minor expenses”. Lupuwana said a random survey of 902 clients had shown that 80% of clients found that Seda’s assistance had a positive effect on their business. This support had come amid limited resources, and despite a six-month moratorium on the provision of all services by the agency to small enterprises. 22 October 2009 The Seda technology programme assisted 835 small businesses with a total turnover of R129-million, through its network of 27 incubators, and also helped to create 224 new small enterprises, Lupuwana said. Forging partnerships The limited budget – the agency received R331.2-million for 2009/10 – was a “major problem” in terms of meeting the agency’s targets. South Africa’s Small Enterprise Development Agency helped over 14 000 clients with services ranging from business planning and registrations to cooperatives support and access to markets in 2008/09. Its Community Private Public Partnership programme, which offers support to co-operatives and community-owned projects, has also been revived. In all, 199 830 potential and existing small businesses accessed the agency’s services through its 42 branches countrywide, an increase of 7.3% over the previous year. Seda had decided to limit the use of consultants to the supply of more technical services, and to 20% of all services offered by Seda, with the remainder being offered by in-house advisors, Lupuwana said. Source: BuaNewslast_img read more

Gift of the Givers: 25 years of philanthropy: Ahmed Bham

first_imgIn a series of five articles, we share stories from Gift of the Givers volunteers in their own words as the organisation marks its 25th year of serving humanity. Ahmed Bham is the head of search and rescue. Find out about his experience in Haiti.Volunteering for Gift of the Givers taught Bham more about himself and motivated him to study further. (Image: Gift of the Givers)Sulaiman PhilipAhmed Bham: Head of search and rescue and lecturer in emergency medical care in the North West provincial Department of HealthI lead the first Gift of the Givers team to arrive in Haiti in 2010. We comprised a team of 10 search and rescue and advanced life support paramedics. Our medical team set up a field hospital while the search and rescue team began looking for surviviors in the rubble in Port au Prince. For seven days we recovered only bodies. We moved on to the Catholic cathedral where our dogs indicated there may be a survivor. After two-and-a-half hours of searching we pulled Ana Zizi from the rubble. This 69-year-old woman had been buried under the rubble for 10 days, her first words, in French, were: “God is great.” She looked at me and said: “I love you”.We stabilised her at our field hospital before she was shipped to a US Navy ship for further treatment. The whole time we talked, through my interpreter. When I told her we were from South Africa she said: “Look how amazing God is that he brought you all the way from South Africa to recue me.”I think for the first time I realised that things were done through us and not by us. I believe that is why I volunteer for the Gift of the Givers; it is a spiritual organisation guided by a desire to serve and help all of humanity. We, the volunteers and staff, come from all backgrounds and are driven by the same passion and purpose. Dr Sooliman will not compromise on that principle. Everyone is given humanitarian aid and the same level of medical care and treatment regardless.“I get to serve and represent my beloved country and show the world what Africa has to offer. We are a unique and amazing nation. I know the spirit of ubuntu lives in us.” (Image: Gift of the Givers)Wherever I arrive I am already looking at the logistics, how can we assist and what are the needs. It’s a calling and passion that I am driven to fulfill. As a volunteer travelling into a disaster zone, you have a picture in you mind of what its going to be like, but the reality can sometimes be overwhelming. You learn to adapt to the situation on the ground.Every mission I have gone on has taught me lessons, has given me that feeling of contentment and self-fulfilment. In 2005, I was honoured to be selected to go to Pakistan to help in the aftermath of the earthquake. Many of my personal foundation lessons were learnt there. It was an experience that opened my soul and I learnt a lot about myself and humanity. After Haiti I was more confident in myself and I felt encouraged and motivated to study further so I could do more.My mum passed away when she was only 38, but it was through her that I was first exposed to humanitarian work. I am still inspired by her and I can honestly say the proudest moments in my life have been away on humanitarian missions. I feel that I am fulfilling my mum’s purpose in life by serving humanity. There is also the other side of it: I get to serve and represent my beloved country and show the world what Africa has to offer. We are a unique and amazing nation. I know the spirit of ubuntu lives in us. I have not just seen it, but I have lived it many a time.Read the next article about orthopaedic surgeon, Dr Livan Meneses-Turino, and his experience in Nepal, Haiti, and Palestine.Our first profile was on medical co-ordinator, Dr YM Essack. Click here to read more.To find out how beekeeper, Owen Williams, has contributed to the organisation, click here.Emily Thomas, who works in logistics at Gift of the Givers shares her story.Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.last_img read more

PVL: San Beda thwarts St. Benilde for second win

first_imgDon’t miss out on the latest news and information. Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next San Beda bounced back from its shutout loss to Arellano to tie the Lady Chiefs at second behind Adamson’s 2-0 mark.The Lady Blazers struck back from two sets down with a convincing win in third but lost steam after battling the Red Spikers in a fierce duel majority of the fourth. FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games openingThey slid to 0-2 and are in danger of missing the semifinals.St. Benilde came through with 15 blocks, including eight from Ranya Musa. Nieza Viray backed Racraquin with 12 points. LATEST STORIES Celebrity chef Gary Rhodes dies at 59 with wife by his side Robredo should’ve resigned as drug czar after lack of trust issue – Panelo SBC’s top hitter Cesca Racraquin challenges St. Benildes’ Dianne Ventura as Marites Pablo tries to provide help during their PVL Collegiate Conference clash at the Filoil Flying V Center. CONTRIBUTED PHOTOSan Beda warded off St. Benilde’s late charge for a 25-21, 25-20, 17-25, 25-19 victory t in the Premier Volleyball League Collegiate Conference at Filoil Flying V Center Wednesday.Cesca Racraquin took charge with 15 points for the Red Spikers, who notched survived the Lady Blazers’ fightback to notch their second win.ADVERTISEMENT Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ Trump signs bills in support of Hong Kong protesters Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ NATO’s aging eye in the sky to get a last overhaul Celebrity chef Gary Rhodes dies at 59 with wife by his side Ateneo Blue Babble protests CHR budget, EJKs at halftime performance Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games MOST READ View commentslast_img read more