- Advertisement -

    Malawi citizen-funded COVID-19 initiative awarded for transparency


    - Ad Keep reading below -
    Members of Malawi’s COVID Response Private Citizens Initiative donating equipment

    Members of Malawi’s COVID Response Private Citizens Initiative donating equipment

    A citizen-funded COVID-19 effort in Malawi has received an award from Britain’s Queen Elizabeth for its work fighting the coronavirus pandemic.

    - Ad Keep reading below -

    The queen said the initiative shows the utmost transparency in the use of its privately raised funding. Malawi’s COVID Response Private Citizens Initiative started in January, when the country’s hospitals were overwhelmed with coronavirus patients and lacked resources at the peak of the second wave of the pandemic.

    - Ad Keep reading below -

    Public hospitals were in short supply of oxygen cylinders, concentrators, diagnostics kits and other equipment essential to treat COVID-19 patients.

    Dr. Thandie Majenda Hara, deputy lead organizer for the initiative, said, “At some point we had a patient who literally went to Kamuzu Central Hospital and put up an SOS on his Facebook page saying that, apparently, they did not have enough flow meters, so he couldn’t have access to oxygen, as well as patients that were in the ward with him. And it was that particular cry for help that was a trigger for what in the end became this initiative.”

    ALSO READ  Germany calls for upholding Libya arms embargo
    - Ad Keep reading below -

    Equipment, food, repairs

    She said the group spearheaded a crowdfunding campaign that raised $286,000 to buy oxygen cylinders, ventilators, personal protective equipment and other items most needed in public hospitals.

    ALSO READ  200 artists sign statement calling for release of Egypt political prisoner Sanaa Seif

    The initiative also brought food to health workers, fixed ambulances and repaired some damaged infrastructure inside hospitals.

    “The people that actually came together to donate here were not people who had extra cash to spend,” Hara said. “We had primary students; we had people [from] as far away [as] Australia, Chitipa, Nsanje [districts], everywhere. People were committed to doing something about the lot.”

    In Britain, in a press release Friday, Queen Elizabeth said the award was given in recognition of the initiative’s transparency, accountability and efficiency.

    Arrests, audit

    The Commonwealth Points of Light award was given at a time when police in Malawi have arrested more than 64 government officials after an audit revealed misuse of $8 million in government funds allocated for the fight against COVID-19.

    ALSO READ  Kenyan trucker with COVID-19 symptoms dies in Gulu

    Police said some of the suspects were out on bail facing charges including fraud, theft by public servant and abuse of public office. In a statement this week, police said detectives were still investigating and more arrests would follow.

    David Beer, the British high commissioner in Malawi, said the award was a token of appreciation for what Malawi’s citizen-driven COVID-19 response initiative had done.

    “The award on behalf of the queen, you know, is very much because the group, eight of them, has done such an astonishing job,” Beer said. “This initiative is having incredible effect — not the amount of money they have raised, but what they have managed to do with it, and we want them to have recognition.”

    ALSO READ  Egyptian convicted of stealing $6m from Kuwait company to be extradited, report says

    Health rights campaigners said the award would send a message to those in charge of COVID-19 funds that good work pays.

    ‘Amazing response’

    Hara said the award was not something the team expected.

    ALSO READ  South Africa's Royal Scandal: New Zulu King's Claim Disputed  | Muhabarishaji News Agency

    “We never really went out to gain the award,” she said. “We are very, very happy; we are very proud that the initiative has been recognized. So, for us the award isn’t really about the team. It’s not about any of us. It’s about the amazing response Malawians gave in a time of the crisis.”

    She said the initiative would continue to assist in critical situations. Hara said the initiative above all had proved that collective responsible action by Malawi’s citizens was possible even in a time of national crisis.

    - read any article below now-

    Latest news

    Jumuiya ya kimataifa yaelezea wasiwasi juu ya ghasia za Jerusalem

     Jumuiya ya kimataifa imeelezea wasiwasi mkubwa juu ya ghasia zinazoendelea mjini Jerusalem, siku moja baada ya makabiliano baina ya polisi wa Israel na Waplestina...

    Red Cross lacking partnership of Taraba Govt – Scribe

    The leadership of the Taraba State branch of the Nigeria Red Cross has lamented what it called the lukewarm attitudes of the state government...

    Filming of Disney sequel Disenchanted to begin in Irish locations on Monday

    - Advertisement -

    You might also likeRELATED
    Recommended to you

    - Advertisement -
    %d bloggers like this: