31 August 2020 (ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia): The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), in partnership with the European Union (EU) and the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS), today held a handover ceremony of supplies and equipment worth 14 million Euros within the framework of the broader 60 million Euros package of the EU Response to Health and Socio-economic Impact of COVID-19 in the IGAD Region at Bole International Airport in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
On behalf of the organisation’s Member States, IGAD Executive Secretary, Dr Workneh Gebeyehu, officially received supplies and equipment during this ceremony in the presence of the Minister of Health and the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia, the Head of the EU Delegation to Ethiopia, the Director of UNOPS-Ethiopia, IGAD Ambassadors to Ethiopia as well as representatives from partners implementing the EU Response to Health and Socio-economic Impact of COVID-19 in the IGAD region*.
Dr Workneh said: ‘The IGAD region continues to experience upsurge of COVID-19 cases which presents a myriad of logistical challenges, including shortages of laboratory test kits, Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) materials and logistics for patients care. Coupled with the existing burden of other communicable and non communicable diseases, COVID-19 will definitely strain the public health infrastructure of our countries. The equipment and supplies to be received will go a long way in supporting the response efforts towards COVID-19 pandemic in the region. On behalf of IGAD Member States and the people of the region, I take this opportunity to thank the EU for being the first respondent to the call for support by the IGAD Heads of States, Health and Finance Ministers in the coordinated efforts against COVID-19. I also thank UNOPS and all the other implementing partners for being onboard with us.’
The equipment and supplies include assortment of:
- Personal Protective Equipments including 3.5 million surgical masks, 3.5 million gloves, 700 000 hair covers, 70 000 safety boxes, 35 000 face shields, 14 000 shoes covers and much more;
- 245,000 COVID-19 tests kits consisting of testing kits, Nasopharyngeal swabs (NS), Viral Transport Media (VTM) and thermometers;
- 16 standard ambulances;
- 8 ambulances with full life support equipment;
- 8 mobile laboratories; and
- 5 field vehicles.
On top of these deliveries which constitute a portion of the 60 million Euros package the EU is providing to the IGAD region against COVID-19, the Programme ‘will boost the remarkable efforts of national response committees in IGAD Member States to contain and control the pandemic, promote trade and protect livelihoods’, Dr Workneh said on June 17.
The implementing partners include the International Organisation for Migration, UNICEF, GIZ and Trade Mark East Africa while UNOPS is the managing partner.
*The EU Response to Health and Socio-economic Impact of COVID-19 in the IGAD Region, which was announced in June this year, is a €60 million package to help tackle the health and socio-economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in support of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) in its mandate to coordinate national responses to the COVID-19 pandemic in the region. The programme focuses on vulnerable groups, including migrants, refugees, internally displaced persons and cross-border communities. It also helps ensure borders and critical supply chains are safe for trade and promote digital solutions to monitor the crisis.
See the European Union full press release dated June 17, 2020 at