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Dangote Foundation, GBCHealth set to build coalition on health

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Dangote Foundation and GBCHealth have joined forces to forge a new model of partnership, African Business Coalition on Health (GBCHealth) in Africa.

Chairman of Dangote Foundation, Aliko Dangote, shared plans to build an African Business Coalition on Health (ABCHealth), during the Bloomberg Global Business Forum, he was co-hosting, and which took place alongside the United Nations General Assembly this week in New York.

According to him, the African-led coalition of companies and philanthropists, will seek to improve the health and wellbeing of Africans, both within the workplace and within the broader communities. He stated that the partnership will develop and deploy impactful health programs across Africa, deepening knowledge, building evidence for future investment and strengthening coordination among African philanthropists, business leaders, companies and local business networks.

The Coalition is building on the leadership, reputation and convening power of the Aliko Dangote Foundation and the experience, reputation and global reach of GBCHealth. Critical issues that will be the focus of the partnership ranges from nutrition to malaria, with priorities identified and agreed by local leadership.

Through his Foundation, Dangote has made an unprecedented grant and seed contribution to GBCHealth of US$ 1.5 million over three years as a call to action and a signal to the African business community of the importance of working together and investing in health.

“The time is ripe for the private sector to proactively demonstrate its value in partnering to lead a new era in development,” said Mr. Dangote. “The coalition can provide much needed guidance to ensure activities and investments are driving results in areas where the private sector can have real impact, focusing on holistic and integrated solutions that cross borders. We look forward to working with other business leaders as partners in development to drive this impact.”

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Co-chair of GBCHealth’s Board of Directors, Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede said, “This coalition brings together two heavyweights in the health and development arena”.

“Together we have an opportunity to demonstrate how investing in health and creating healthier populations, can help business maximize shareholder value, accelerate economic growth and make entry into new markets more feasible.”

The coalition will have five primary objectives over its first three years:

The Aliko Dangote Foundation has demonstrated expertise in implementing result-oriented health programs in Nigeria and across Africa

Incubate partnerships on priority health programs to enhance and accelerate results;

Work directly with companies to optimize workplace and community health programs;

Advocate for policies and initiatives that drive system-level changes;

Create a hub of data and insights specific to Africa and African business;

Curate leadership events to convene and drive action around common health issues, across sectors.

The program will kick off in Nigeria and roll out through business regions in Africa and beyond over the next three years.

The continent currently has 400 companies with revenue of more than $1 billion per year, and these companies are growing faster, and are more profitable in general, than their global peers. Coupled with these fast-moving regional leaders, small and growing businesses create 80% of the continent’s employment and are stoking the engines of growth.

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Against this backdrop, according to Dangote, there’s a new cadre of responsible business leaders and philanthropists who understand the value and promise of sustainable large-scale investments in African countries, and are poised to make an even bigger impact on the continent’s people and economies.

Investments in better training, healthcare and supply chain accountability have demonstrated direct financial return through gains in productivity and efficiency, while sup­port for social programs has accelerated economic growth and raised incomes which in turn unlocks a wider con­sumer base and makes entry into new markets more feasible.

In her comments, CEO of the Dangote Foundation, Zouera Youssoufou, said “GBCHealth has a strong track record of bringing diverse groups together to improve the health wellbeing of communities. We look forward to collaborating to build an African business community united as a force for healthier and more inclusive development.”

“What is needed now is an approach that combines the value of local insights and trusted networks with the leverage of a global platform and expertise to support the more coordinated and impactful involvement of the African private sector across the continent and within the global development community,” commented Mr. Aig-Imoukhuede.

“The coalition builds on the local-to-global business approach we have developed in Nigeria through our work with the Corporate Alliance on Malaria in Africa (CAMA). The Aliko Dangote Foundation has demonstrated expertise in implementing result-oriented health programs in Nigeria and across Africa. We look forward to our collaboration to bring insights from this work to a global audience,” said Nancy Wildfeir-Field, President of GBCHealth.

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Immediate plans include hiring an African based CEO for ABCHealth, and building a support base for the coalition working towards a launch in early 2018.

The foundation is generously providing office space and support for coalition staff over the first three years of development.

“It’s an ambitious and bold project,” said Dangote, “but the only way to move Africa forward is to take bold moves, to think big, dream big and do big things together – breaking down silos, working across borders and working across sectors– with government and with each other.”

 

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Governor Wike proscribes IPOB’s activities in Rivers

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Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers state has signed an Executive Order proscribing the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) in the state.

Governor Wike,  who made this known on Wednesday during a state-wide broadcast in Port Harcourt, also emphasized that the state is home to all tribes.

According to him, “We have everything against the presence and activities of the legally proscribed and anarchic Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and whatever that group stands for in Rivers State.

“This is clearly a terrorist group whose existence, creed, mission, and activities are strongly denounced even by the Government and peoples of the South-Eastern States of the country.

“I have therefore signed the executive order to reinforce the total ban on IPOB and its activities in Rivers State or any part thereof and nothing will stop us from enforcing this ban in its entirety”, Governor Wike assured

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Sports

FIFA President, Infantino tests positive for COVID-19

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FIFA Chief, Gianni Infantino has contracted coronavirus popularly known as COVID-19,  the world’s football governing body announced on Tuesday.

According to the information scooped from AFP, the 50-year-old has mild symptoms and will remain in isolation for a further 10 days.

“All people who came into contact with the FIFA President during the last few days have been informed accordingly and they are being requested to take the necessary steps,” the body said.

“FIFA sincerely wishes President Infantino a speedy recovery,” it added.

Infantino’s last public appearances was at FIFA’s Compliance Summit which ended on October 16 when all attendees were present via video.

Cases, hospitalisations and deaths from Covid-19 in the body’s base, Switzerland, have doubled from one week to the next throughout October.

The country’s government is expected to decide Wednesday on new measures to control the spread of the virus.

The spread of the illness has cast doubt over Wednesday’s potential meeting between Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi in the Champions League after the Juventus attacker tested positive for the illness earlier this month.

 

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Health

Go for test, COVID-19 not defeated yet, Oyo govt. urges residents

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The Seyi Makinde led – Oyo state government,on Tuesday urged residents of the state with signs and defined symptoms of the COVID-19 to submit themselves for testing, adding that the state  is yet to defeat the virus.

The state government also urged them to adhere strictly to the preventive protocols as enumerated by the  experts.

Dr Bashir Bello, the Commissioner for Health, who spoke at a sensitization program organized for journalists in the state on COVID-19, held at Kakanfo Inn in Ibadan disclosed that the state had some high rise in the positivity rates recently which the government is steering up to.

Dr. Bello averred that the flouting of COVID-19 protocols during the #EndSARS protests which rocked the country over the last few weeks is no doubt going to increase the rate of transmission of the virus, but assured that the state is prepared to tackle any upsurge; stressing that the permanent structures have been put in place to fight the virus on a long term note.

The Commissioner, who admitted that testing has reduced in the state, further explained that factors like stigmatization and fear are responsible for the reduction in the rate COVID-19 tests are conducted in the state.

“We are meant to give people initiative. As you have seen that the problem of stigmatization is one of the problems that we are having. You could now see that the few positively tested ones are refusing to give us their contacts. First of all, they don’t want the public to know that they have tested positive. Two, since they know it has affected you, you are now pointing to other people.

“So what actually happen is that we have left those centres, about 27 centres out of the 33 LCDAs so that people can willfully go without the problem of being stigmatized. It’s a place you can walk to without people knowing you. It’s like the HIV in those days that we were begging people to do test. HIV has now become a common thing even every pregnant woman is ready to get tested.

“So this COVID-19 issue has not been… although we still know we have it. For example, we are having high rises in the positivity rate which the government is steering up to and thanks to God we are not unprepared. We have had a very good output. A reliable arrest of the case but it is just like the motto of the ‘Boys Scout’ which is: we are prepared.

“We are only telling the public that COVID-19 is still very much around and we implore each and everyone of us to at their own free will go and get tested. Nobody will report that because we only send you the result through a coded number and a coded message to your personal phone number which you will have given in the form which is a fairly confidential way”, he added.

He also revealed that Oyo State is the only state where residents can undergo COVID-19 test free of charge,noting that other states now charge various amounts of money.

The Commissioner, however stated that the only set of people who pay to undergo COVID-19 test in the state are those who are planning to travel out of the country and they need a proof to certify that they are COVID-19 free.

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