Saturday, 31 January 2015
Commissioner Kaloko briefs the media on the Status of the African Union Response to Ebola Virus Disease Outbreak in West Africa (ASEOWA) and Campaign efforts to End Child Marriage
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 28 January 2015: “We are getting optimistic reports from Ministries of Health of the affected countries that mortality and infection rates are declining, in fact Schools will be re-opening in Sierra Leone, Liberia had their senate elections couple of months back and this is impressively very good news “ said H.E. Dr Mustapha Sidiki Kaloko, Commissioner for Social Affairs of the African Union at a media brief today at the AU headquarters. The press conference was held within the framework of the 24th AU Summit.
The commissioner also recognized ASEOWA efforts of deploying the health workers and expressed gratitude to all the support shown in all levels in the fight against the Ebola epidemic. The commissioner updated the press on the African Centre for Disease control and prevention saying that the center is almost a reality because it’s going to happen and will take off in mid-2015.
Subsequently, the Commissioner addressed the issue of child marriage calling on all Africans to join the campaign. He pointed out that the figures for child marriages are very high and in some countries going as high as 70-80% and an average of 34% in the continent.
“We need to address the issues of children and child marriage is one way of not addressing them. we have initially selected about ten countries among them chad, Burkina Faso, Uganda and Sierra Leone to launch the child marriage campaign which started on 29th May 2014 and it will be ongoing in the whole continent.”
The commissioner concluded that Child marriage directly oversteps on the current African Union policies and frameworks such as Agenda 2063 and this cannot be allowed to progress. The press conference ended with a question and answers session that gave the opportunity for the journalists to gather more knowledge and information about the activities of the AUC.