Ghana yesterday took delivery of its consignment of coronavirus (COVID -19) test kits and personal protective equipment (PPEs) donated by Chinese billionaire, Jack Ma.
The items, including100, 000 masks, 20,000 test kits and 1,000 medical protective suits, were received on arrival from Ethiopia by the Minister of Health, Kwaku Agyeman-Manu.
Ghana as well as three other African countries including Gabon, Congo and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) are the latest to benefit from the third round of distribution of the prevention materials.
Mr Agyeman-Manu expressed gratitude to the Jack Ma Foundation for the donation and commended the Chinese Embassy in Ghana and the Ethiopian government for expediting distribution of the much-needed supplies to support efforts to fight the spread of COVID-19 in Ghana.
He said the government has already ordered 30,000 PPEs and several quantities of masks, which would be in the country by the end of this week to augment available materials to help contain and manage the disease.
Additionally, he stated that the Ministry has furthered the registration of 18 new indigenous producers of sanitisers to ensure available supply of the product in the country and address mass importation.
Government, the Minister said, was also receiving financial and material support from corporate and religious organisations and individuals and called on the citizenry to observe the procedures and measures being implemented to fight COVID-19.
Deputy Chief of Mission, Chinese Embassy in Ghana, Xhu Jing, said the Chinese government was concerned about the spread of the coronavirus in Ghana, adding that the country would continue to support countries with medical supplies to be able to fight the spread of the disease.
Egypt, Sudan, Eritrea and Djibouti received the first shipment on March 23 while South Africa, Burundi, Rwanda, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Kenya, South Sudan, Togo and Nigeria took delivery of the second batch.
Meanwhile, the second shipment of supplies from the Jack Ma Foundation containing 540,000 medical grade masks and 20,000 protective clothes, according to Prime Minister of Ethiopia, Abiy Ahmed Ali, was on its way to Ethiopia.
In response to the spread of COVID-19 globally, Jack Ma, announced earlier in March, that he would donate a total of 1.1 million testing kits, six million masks, and 60,000 protective suits and face shields to all 54 African countries.
Other countries in Latin America, Taiwan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Laos, the Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and a host of other affected countries have also received donation of PPEs and test kits from Jack Ma to help fight the spread of the coronavirus.
So far, 411,187 of COVID-19 cases have been reported globally. Of the number, more than 2,400 are in Africa.
Here in Ghana, 68 infection cases have been recorded as of yesterday with three deaths.
BY CLAUDE NYARKO ADAMS