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AFRICAN COMMUNITY AND FAITH LEADERS ARE IN ACTION ON EBOLA CRISIS PDF Print E-mail
Diaspora News
Written by Tony Bee, Sydney, Australia   
Wednesday, 05 November 2014 12:00

Friday 31st October 2014, was a big day for all Africans living in Australia especially Sydney. The month of October ended with an unforgettable meeting held by all Africans including religious leaders in New South Wales (NSW). Some of the purposes of the meeting were to find lasting solutions to Ebola virus that ravages their countries particularly in West Africa, secondly how to approach the Australian government facially to express the frustration and distress situation of their people in Africa especially, West Africa where Ebola is killing their people day in and day out.

The Chairman of the meeting was Mr. James Addo, a Ghanaian national.  In his opening remarks, he welcomed and thanked his fellow African brothers and sisters for putting aside their busy schedules in order to make their present felt. He said that it is time for Africans in Australian to come together and work as a team for the benefit of all Africans in the country. “The problem of the deadly disease, Ebola virus in the West Africa region is not only a problem of Guineans, Liberians and Sierra Leoneans. It’s a problem for all Africans and the world as a whole, because after those three countries no one knows wherenext Ebolavirus will have to surface orit,” he commented. He empathised with SierraLeoneans for the untold suffering of their people in the country and commended them for their hard work especially SEAG action group in fighting against Ebola virus in their country.

One of the active members of SaloneEbola Action Group in Sydney who is a medical doctor, Dr. Mike Kamara was asked by the Chairman, Addo to brief his fellow Africans so that there would be no duplication of efforts as Sierra Leone how far they havegone in helping their people in the fight against Ebola in their country.  “We as Sierra Leoneans, we have done lots for our country including individuals and also as a group. Dr.Kamara highlighted some of the activities that Sierra Leoneans in Australia had done including the openingof accounts with different international organisations including Red Cross, Rotary and Migrant Resource Centre for fund raising. Sierra Leoneans have contributed money to those accounts for the country to fight against Ebola. Currently we are also engaging the African stokeholdsand the Australian government for man power contribution, because Sierra Leone needs medical doctors, counsellors, nurses, psychologists, psychiatrists to assist the containment of the deadly Ebola disease in the country”, he said.

In helping Dr.Kamara in highlighting some of the good works that been done and still doing by Sierra Leoneans, A. J. Thomas a Sierra Leonean community activist and a Lawyer by profession, commonly known as Iron lady pointed out that they are currently working on both short term and long term goals towards the containment of Ebola virus in their motherland. She said that, some of the short term goals are the lobbying and rallying of the Australian government to send human resources and the issuing of visas to West Africans and other West African friends to go and assist their people the fight against Ebola in the country. “However, all of these issues need a concerted effort by all Africans living in Australia because today is Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia tomorrow could be any other country she added.”

Rosemary, a Kenyan African community activist also commended Sierra Leoneans for doing so well in their community. She pointedout that they were not been informed as Africans about such activities been mentioned by Dr Kamara and A. J. Thomas, especially about their Ebola action groupwithin the Sierra Leone community in Sydney. Therefore it was goodwhen theChairman asked Dr Kamara to explain to them what they have done and still doing as Sierra Leoneans towards their country’s Ebola problem.“Now that we know what is going on in the Sierra Leone community towards the fight against the deadly Ebola disease in their country,all Africans have to come together as a united front to approach the Australian government to do more for Africans especially, in terms of Ebola crisis in the West African countries,” she emphasised.

Members present agreed that a position statement bewritten and presented to the Australian government and a conference shouldalso beorganized andinvite the Australian stake holders including politicians, charitable organisation stakeholders and religious stake holders in the country.

The meeting ended with the formation of different working sub committees including political, lobbying,media and fundraising that will work day and night to see that the dream of Africans in Australia become a reality.

 

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