Africa’s leading telecom giant, MTN Group in a press statement announced its partnership with the African Union in the fight against COVID-19.
In what it described as a “unique public/private partnership” MTN donated US$25 million towards AU’s COVID-19 vaccination programme.
The donation, according to the network provider, will help secure about seven million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine for health workers across the continent.
“The devastating impact of COVID-19has been unprecedented and profound. Public and private partnerships are needed if we are to succeed in the fight against the pandemic and restore social and economic norms for our continent and our communities,” said Ralph Mupita, President and Chief Executive Officer of MTN Group.
Currently, Africa has barely secured vaccine for 30 per cent of its entire population as confirmed by President Cyril Ramaphosa, Chairperson of the African Union barely two weeks ago.
The AU Chairperson announced that the Union has been able to secure 270 million COVID-19 vaccine doses so far.
Undoubtedly, what’s available can barely cater for the entire 1.3 billion African population, hence the need for essential support from private organizations like MTN Group.
“Our goal is to ensure that all those who need the COVID-19 vaccine have access to it very quickly,” says Dr John Nkengasong, Director of Africa CDC.
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However, Africa have had to struggle with limited finance, subsequently slowing down the logistics of vaccinating at a large scale.
Giving the above challenge, the Director of Africa CDC further urged other organizations to render support in the ongoing fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We therefore welcome the right partnerships, like the one with MTN, to achieve our minimum 60 percent vaccination target,” Dr John added.
MTN’s latest donation is a consolidated effort towards combating COVID-19
This is not the first time that MTN will be rendering a significant aid in the fight against COVID-19 pandemic.
Since the early stage of the outbreak, MTN has contributed significantly to help limit the spread of the disease and save lives and livelihoods within its African market.
Back in August, 2020, the network provider in partnership with Samsung supported Nigeria health workers with digital aids that made the process of data capturing and case reporting easy.
Also, the network provider had previously made provisions for over N500 million worth of airtime, data, and analytics, through the Nigerian Governors’ Forum (NGF).
Similarly, over N1.4 billion worth of airtime, data, and devices was provided to connect medical personnel and health agencies.
This donation, however, consolidates MTN’s efforts to help find lasting solutions to solve the challenges facing the continent and to guarantee a healthy Africa, for all Africans.
While the effort does not end in just Africa, MTN Group is planning a similar support commitments for the other markets in which it operate in the Middle East.