Taskforce Adopts Coordinated Strategy to Fight Ebola

January 18, 2020

first_imgWith the World Health Organization (WHO) alarming that the death toll in West Africa as a result of the Ebola Virus Disease, could rise to over 20,000 before the disease is contained, the National Ebola Response Taskforce here has put in vogue a robust strategy that will help in fighting the virus effectively.In an exclusive interview with the Daily Observer, the National Coordinator of the Taskforce, James Dorbor Jallah said, to ensure that all of the various groups in the fight against the Ebola scourge work in an coordinated fashion in fighting the various, a national Ebola fight strategy has been evolved.The structure of the strategy, Jallah said, places the Taskforce at the head with three key parts below. The three parts are health, security and outreach. The National Response Coordinator (NRC) headed by Jallah will primarily be responsible for coordinating all of the work and functions of the three components of the strategy.Under the health component, the Ministry of Health (MOH), which is the epicenter, will supervise all teams delivering health related services. This will essentially include the collection of sick and dead bodies caused by the contraction of the EVD. The cremation and the burial of the dead as well as the formulation of a distribution plan of the medications, protective gears and related material use in the Ebola fight.   The Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) and the Ministry of Information will head the outreach segment of the strategy. In this realm, the MIA will help in the collection of the dead Ebola bodies as well as help in the tracking of contacts made with the dead body caused by the EVD.Moreover, the two ministries will liaise and work with other local and international groups in outreach activities relative to the fight against the Ebola malady. The security arm of the strategy will be headed by the Ministry of National Defense (MOD). All security apparatuses lined up in the fight against the deadly scourged will work in sync with the MOD, Jallah divulged.The youthful and energetic NRC head said putting this structure in place was key to the successful operation of the National Ebola Taskforce.The strategy he said was intended to avoid any form of confusion and duplication and overlapping of functions. He further that, the strategy will be very instrumental in tracking all of the interventions and work that international partners are making in this battleThe strategy, Jallah asserted, has inherent in it a framework for a chain of communication amongst all members of the Taskforce and the various ancillary groups that are working in various sphere in trying to contain the virus. The NRC will coordinate the works of the various structures inbuilt in the strategy which has become a roadmap in the fight of the EVD.All strategy employed by the taskforce will be replicated in the counties where there are cases of Ebola Virus, Jallah said. He however informed the Daily Observer that, at the moment, Ebola bodies in the counties are been buried and not cremated.By the current strategy, each county has a burial team, treatment centers, and contact tracing teams working along with the health team and the Taskforce across the country.Health Facilities OverwhelmedAddressing concerns that the Taskforce was responding to calls for  the removal of dead bodies and the conveyance of the sick to treatment centers in slow manner, Jallah  agreed that the complains were genuine but attributed it to the limitation on the communication chain and logistics.To improve on the situation, Jallah explained that, the number of bed normally available at treatment centers in previous Ebola outbreak instances have been 40. But the available treatment centers have been overwhelmed thus prompting the increment of the beds to 180 at some centers. At ELWA withholding Center alone, there are plans to increase the number of bed to 300 to accommodate more cases.The rate at which people are contracting the virus has caused the Taskforce to embark on a fast track approach to developed additional treatment facilities at the Island Hospital, the Unity Conference Center, Omega Navigations Station and the JFK Medical Center.Experts from the American Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) have stated that the outbreak of EVD spread in Liberia is unprecedented and sometimes terming it deceptive. These two institutions have years of experience but observed that the level of the EVD in Liberia must be dealt with strategically.Part of the reasons adduced for the initial slow response, according to Jallah,  was that the rate at which cremation was ongoing could not allow for the accommodation of more dead bodies owing to the limited space at the India Consul General Crematorium which is currently being used to dispose of the dead.He narrated that there is a mismatched of the rate of Ebola dead to the space at the crematorium thus affecting the body collection.He indicated that there is no withholding space at the crematorium thus prompting vehicles conveying dead bodies to park and wait with the corpses on board until the crematorium is decongested. After the vehicles are offloaded before they are sent back in the field to collect more dead bodies. But this sad development will soon be a thing of the past with the Japanese government provision of incinerators.Incinerators to Help in CremationBecause of the increase in the number of people succumbing to the virus and the attendant disposal constraints, Jallah divulged that the Japanese government has made an overture to donate five mobile incinerators to help in cremating the dead.Jallah said, two of the incinerators will be deployed in Montserrado County owing to the death rate in the county, while the rest will be deployed across the country.Liberians disposal of the dead has always been by burying and not by cremation. The only crematorium here is not spacious enough to dispose off large number of dead at the rate that the current incident is inducing.Call CentersTo assuage the problems picking up patients and fast track the collection and disposal of Ebola bodies, Jallah said,  the Call Center established in the GSA yard, will be used to route all calls for both Ebola bodies and patients.There are about 130 staffs at the Call Center working on a 24 hours three shifts schedule to receive and forward calls either for collection of patients or Ebola Bodies. With 35 staff on a shift, the Call Centers helps immensely in collecting patients and disposing off of the dead bodies.Currently, the center is averaging around 2,000 daily. Plans are underway to have Ebola call centers in each county.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Gov’t Won’t Use Executive Power against Parker

January 14, 2020

first_imgThe government will not exercise executive power against suspended National Port Authority Managing Director, Matilda Parker and her comptroller Christina Kparbar Paelay in the U$1.2M bond, prosecutor Theophilus Gould said yesterday.Cllr. Gould told Criminal Court ‘C’ that the government has executive powers to restrict defendant Parker’s movement, but has decided to use the judicial power to deal with her.“If we wanted to use our executive power, we would have done so, but we are only concerned about the legitimacy of the bond filed and not anything else,” Cllr. Gould said.If the bond is rejected by Judge Peter Gbeneweleh, it means that the two defendants could be re-arrested and held in custody until a new bond is filed.Cllr. Gould’s remarks came immediately after the defense team argued that the Family Dollar Universal Insurance (FDUI) has all legal capacities to service bonds for defendants in the country, contrary to prosecutors’ contention that the company does not have the financial capability to do so.The insurance company (FDUI) secured the bond to prevent the defendants from going to jail and to enable them to appear in court whenever asked to do so.Cllr. Gould asked the court to deny the bond because the company, FDUI, has fewer assets to secure it.He, however, admitted that the company has complied with all legal requirements to bond defendants in the country.Defendants Parker and Paelay are accused by the Liberian government of having siphoned US$837,950, while serving in their respective posts at the NPA.They consequently secured a bond through FDUI to prevent them from being incarcerated until their case could commence.Ruling in the matter yesterday was reserved by the court.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Big Post-Ebola Meeting Expected in Monrovia

January 14, 2020

first_imgThe Director-General of the West African Health Organization (WAHO), Dr. Xavier Crespin, has told the Daily Observer in an exclusive interview that WAHO, in consultation with authorities at the Ministry of Health, is set to convene a “very big health meeting in Monrovia,” next month.According to the WAHO DG, the meeting, which is expected to be attended by more than 200 health experts and stakeholders of the African sub-region, will be chaired by the President of Togo, Mr. Faure Gnassingbé, who is the Regional Chair on Ebola. This high level meeting, which is expected to be held on November 24, will be co-chaired by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.Dr. Crespin made the disclosure yesterday following the formal opening of a two-day meeting to setup the Network of ECOWAS Health Communication Specialists (NEHCS), which is taking place in Abidjan, La Côte d’Ivoire.The WAHO DG revealed that before the high level meeting, health experts and other major stakeholders, including all of the Ministers of Health and key partners from across the region, the continent and beyond, will gather here for deliberations on what they have to do together to improve the health situation in the region.Dr. Crespin stated that so far, his institution has been working assiduously to improve the surveillance system and how they can better control diseases in the region.“We are also now working on how to strengthen a regional surveillance and disease control center. This Center is already in place, but we intend to make it more operational. Also recently in Accra Ghana, we put in place a regional intervention team comprising all the health professionals in the region so that when there is a need in one of our countries, we can immediately as ECOWAS, movein to show our solidarity by assisting and supporting,” he added.He also stated that they will be looking at how they can coordinate resources which come into the region and how they can further strengthen health system capacity in West Africa.He said the Heads of State and Government in the region had decided that the Regional CDC be headquartered in Abuja, Nigeria, adding: “We already have the building; we already have some of the staff and the budget.”Before he spoke with this newspaper, he had earlier participated in the formal opening of the two-day meeting to set up the Network of ECOWAS Health Communication Specialists (NEHCS), which working session is chaired by Mr. Sorbor George, Director of Communications at the Ministry of Health.Each ECOWAS member state sent two individuals, including those from the various health ministries and one independent local health journalist.The WAHO DG urged the independent media to effectively collaborate with them in order to widely disseminate activities of his entity.He expressed delight over the gathering saying it demonstrates the commitment and willingness of Communication Officers to work with WAHO in order to achieve its objectives.The WAHO Director General reminded the participants that communication is a significant tool, promising his organization’s commitment to support whatever network that will be set up. Speaking earlier, the Director-General of Health at the Ministry of Health, Côte d’Ivoire, told the gathering that the lack of effective communications during the recent Ebola crisis in the region, shows that there is an urgent need for the Network to be set up.“So every one of you needs to fully participate in setting up this Network, which will adequately communicate with our population on what is happening in order for WAHO’s mission to be accomplished,” he said.The Côte d’Ivoire DG of Health, Prof. Dagnan added: “You are a vibrant channel for the dissemination of vital pieces of information.” For his part, the Deputy Director-General (DDG) of WAHO, hoped that the two-day meeting won’t be “just another meeting,” but that after it, the Network will effectively communicate with the population. “I therefore urge you to fully commit yourselves to this partnership with WAHO and that the Network can adequately communicate with the population,” Dr. Laurent Assogba, WAHO, DDG, added.Among other things, the Network is expected to boost the flow of information of WAHO to the local population in member states.The meeting is a follow up to another that was held in Burkina Faso last year by Communication Officers to lay a foundation for the improvement of media coverage of WAHO programs and activities.The Ivory Coast meeting is being sponsored by the United States Aid for International Development (USAID).Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Bike club completes second last stage of race

January 12, 2020

first_imgOn Tuesday evening, the Blizzard Bike Club completed the sixth stage of their seven stage event.Stage six of the Spring Stage Race consisted of 17 riders, racing through the 35 km Montney Road circuit. Colter Young emerged victorious Tuesday night, with a time of 1:00:51. After a sprint for second place, Pat Ferris emerged as the runner-up with a time of 1:03:38, with Kevin Shaw, Les Elliot and Jake Elliot finishing behind him. – Advertisement -As the final stage of the event approaches, Colter Young and Kevin Shaw are currently tied for first place with 20 points each. Pat Ferris is in second place with 15 points, George Gamble is third with 13 points and Les Elliot is fourth with 10. With six stages finished, the Spring Stage Race will come down to the seventh and final leg, taking place Thursday evening. The seventh stage is the Baldonnel time trial which begins at 6:30 p.m.Advertisement For more information on the event, please contact Ferris Fast Cycles at 250-785-3711 or visit their website.last_img read more

Realtors raise the stakes at event

January 11, 2020

first_imgBack by popular demand, the Greater Antelope Valley Association of Realtors will host its 2007 Monopoly Casino Night on June 1, from 6 to 10 p.m., at the new Hellenic Center in Lancaster. The stylish center, located at 43404 30th St. West, has the ambience of a modern casino. The event, a community favorite, features traditional casino games, Texas Hold ‘Em poker, raffle prizes and includes a full dinner. Adding to the fun this year is a best costume contest. Themed after the popular board game Monopoly, the event funds the Association’s TLC/Charitable Giving Program. With 10 tables available for sponsorships, the Texas Hold ‘Em game will accommodate 80 seats, available for play. Players will compete for Visa gift cards in the amount of: grand prize – $500; second prize – $250; third prize – $50. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! For all attendees, the evening event includes Las Vegas favorites such as craps, roulette, Wheel of Fortune and blackjack. Family and friends are invited to join in the festivities; keep in mind this is an adult-only affair. Presale tickets are $22 per person ($25 at the door) and $50 to play Texas Hold ‘Em. For more information on sponsoring a table, participating in the Texas Hold ‘Em tournament or simply enjoying the camaraderie and challenge of Casino Night in the Antelope Valley, call Regina Lawrence at (661) 435-2450 or Edy Ghazarozian at (661) 726-9175. Tickets may be purchased at: the association office at 1112 West Avenue M-4, Palmdale or online at www.gavar.org. Chapman Communications is a public relations firm in Palmdale that handles publicity for GAVAR. They posted this story May 15 on the Antelope Valley hub on valleynews.com.last_img read more

Bad news for Man United? ‘PSG approach Jose Mourinho to become their next boss’

December 29, 2019

first_imgParis Saint-Germain have contacted Jose Mourinho about becoming their next manager, according to reports.The club’s mega-rich Qatari owners are understood to be considering ending Laurent Blanc’s reign.Blanc has led PSG to three successive Ligue 1 titles and only signed a new long-term contract in February.But he has been unable to improve their record in the Champions League, with defeat to Manchester City earlier this month sending them crashing out at the last-eight stage for the fourth consecutive season.Their latest European failure now looks likely to cost him his job, with PSG keen for Mourinho to take his place.PSG chairman Nasser Al-Khelaifi is understood to have already made contact with Mourinho’s agent, Jorge Mendes, to gauge his interest in the position.Mourinho has an impressive record in the Champions League – he has won it with both Inter Milan and Porto – and Al-Khelafi sees him as the ideal man to boost the club’s chances of success in Europe.The 53-year-old, who was sacked by Chelsea in December, is eager to return to management but is set to wait until the summer before making a decision on his future.Mourinho is said to favour remaining in the Premier League and has been heavily linked with the Manchester United post, with current boss Louis van Gaal under pressure.But United may have to move fast if they want the Portuguese coach with PSG now planning to offer him a mega-deal to replace Blanc. Jose Mourinho 1last_img read more

Connector project is moving forward

December 29, 2019

first_imgSANTA CLARITA – When the new Golden Valley Bridge opened last month to cheers, motorists soon began asking when the next stretch of a highway spanning Santa Clarita would open. Their eyes are on the nearly two miles of Newhall Ranch Road from Rye Canyon Road to state Route 126 that will complete the western leg of the city’s $245 million Cross Valley Connector. “We started hearing right away from people wanting to know when Newhall Ranch would open,” Santa Clarita public works director Robert Newman said Friday. The city is hoping to put the project out to bid by March and choose a contractor a month later, Newman said. Work on the eight-lane segment will take about 1 years, meaning the $32 million leg of the connector would open by the end of 2007. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORECoach Doc Rivers a “fan” from way back of Jazz’s Jordan Clarkson “It’s a very key stretch, part of the overall connection to the I-5,” Newman said. “Certainly a lot of residents up on the northwest corner of city, who have to come down to Valencia Boulevard to get to the I-5, are looking forward to it opening.” Groundbreaking, he said, has been slowed because federal money is being used, which requires additional environmental studies by the state Department of Fish and Game, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the state Regional Water Quality Board. The Connector will link Interstate 5 to the Antelope Valley (14) Freeway. The route is composed of Newhall Ranch Road and Golden Valley Road and is being funded by developers and city, regional and federal money. It is seen as a solution to gridlock on Soledad Canyon Road, Valencia Boulevard and Magic Mountain Parkway. So far, the city has completed construction of Golden Valley Road from Route 14 to Soledad Canyon Road, including the new bridge across Soledad. Newhall Ranch is in place from Rye Canyon Road east to Bouquet Canyon Road, and as being extended east by the Newhall Land and Farming Company in conjunction with its planned River Park development, Newman said. Once Newhall Ranch is completed, the remaining link will be the center of the Connector, a Golden Valley Road bridge over the Santa Clara River to link to Newhall Ranch. Environmental studies are under way for that portion, with the beginning of construction anticipated in 2007, and completion by 2009. Patricia Farrell Aidem, (661) 257-5251 pat.aidem@dailynews.com 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

BREAKING NEWS: SHAUN KELLY SENTENCE TOO LENIENT, COURT RULES

December 28, 2019

first_imgShaun Kelly appearing at a previous court sitting. Pic copyright Northwest Newspix.A DONEGAL man who killed seven friends and a pensioner in the country’s worst road crash will have his sentence increased after the Court of Appeal ruled today the original sentence was unduly lenient.Shaun Kelly (27), of Hill Road, Ballymagan, Buncrana, had pleaded guilty at Letterkenny Circuit Criminal Court to dangerous driving causing the death of eight men on a road between Clonmany and Buncrana on July 11 2010. Giving the court’s judgment, Mr Justice Goerge Birmingham said there were factors present in the case which “jusitified, indeed required” a sentence of lower than seven years.However, the Circuit Court judge had erred in the “double discount” of mitigating the sentence from seven to four and suspending the final two years, Mr Justice Birmingham said.He said the sentence represented a “substantial departure” from what would be appropriate.He said Kelly was entitled to know “his fate” and the court hoped to be in a position to impose a new sentence on him on December 7 next.A DDP lawyer said a prolonged period of “deliberate” dangerous driving and, driving the way he had on that night, it was “emanently forseeable” that there would be multiple fatalities.There were a large number of family members from both sides in court for the appeal.BREAKING NEWS: SHAUN KELLY SENTENCE TOO LENIENT, COURT RULES was last modified: November 16th, 2015 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Court of Appealdangerous driverInishowenShaun Kellylast_img read more

DONEGAL SLIDING TO BOTTOM OF ECONOMIC PILE BECAUSE OF TERRIBLE INTERNET, WARNS DRAGON’S DEN STAR

December 25, 2019

first_imgPeter CaseyA DONEGAL-based businessman says the county is falling behind because of its dreadful internet connections.Dragon’s Den star Peter Casey says he couldn’t do international video interviews from his Inishowen recruitment company base – because they couldn’t guarantee the connection.He said it was 2010 before we got anything consistently better than dial-up – and today, while a major provider offers a fibre optic system capable of 50 Mbps (megabits per second), “by the time it gets to our copper-wire “last mile”, it’s reduced to 6.5 Mbps down and just .5 up – far behind just about any internet-intensive businesses elsewhere on the planet.” Said Casey: “We have recently invested in cutting-edge technology that will allow us to conduct live interviews with anyone on the planet.“However, we won’t be able to use it in our Irish HQ (in Lisfannon) with its current connectivity unless we want to create a very bad impression with people that we want to hire for our clients.“This also reflects badly on our reputation as a high quality provider.“I grew up in Derry and came to know and love Donegal from a very young age. “I’ve invested my money, mind, heart and sweat here. My business is here. Although it’s a business that depends more than many on digital connectivity, it is still here.“But the digital infrastructure the Government has promised us for a long time now is not. And that, for me, is a major problem.”He said Dubliners on cable can get internet connections 50 times faster, complaining: “The democratic proposition that the internet gives everyone an equal opportunity to access information, education, and commercial opportunity is a myth.“Internet access depends as much on physical space as it does on cyberspace. The best speeds are delivered by fibre or cable. Live at any distance from urban Ireland, and you won’t get anything approaching the fastest service.“Rural Ireland is on the wrong side of a vast digital divide. On the right side is well-connected continental Europe as well as urban Ireland. Those of us in the country? We’re a world away from both places. A third world away, in fact. “Take a look at the amount of empty business premises in the typical village or town these days.“We cannot let this go on. A recent World Bank study found that for every 10-percentage-point increase in the penetration of broadband there is an increase of 1.3 percentage points in economic growth.“Broadband is essential to business and very good for any country. If only the cities have it, the countryside suffers economically, culturally, and politically. Disconnected, lovely towns and quaint villages become places to leave.“We are always boasting about our highly educated work force, but there is not much point in training people if they cannot communicate with each other and the rest of the world. “This digital inequality between urban and rural communities is making the economic inequality between these regions even greater.”In a weekend article Casey warned: “Quality, high-speed broadband is a necessity rather than a privilege in today’s society, and should be available in all areas, not just the largest.“Otherwise, we are in danger of creating fast Ireland and slow Ireland, the latter seeing areas such as Donegal continuing to slide to the bottom of the economic table.”DONEGAL SLIDING TO BOTTOM OF ECONOMIC PILE BECAUSE OF TERRIBLE INTERNET, WARNS DRAGON’S DEN STAR was last modified: August 25th, 2014 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:buncranaDragon’s DeninternetLisfannonPeter Caseylast_img read more

Border justice

December 25, 2019

first_imgWhile usually the combination of the words “Supreme Court,” “overturning” and “precedent” arouses great controversy and division here in the U.S., there’s one recent high court reversal that all Americans can celebrate. We refer, of course, to the Mexican Supreme Court. On Wednesday, Mexico’s highest court overturned its 2001 ruling that lifetime imprisonment is cruel and unusual punishment. That earlier decision had barred Mexican authorities from extraditing killers who were likely to get life sentences in the U.S. The result was that Mexico became a place of refuge for some of America’s most wanted – including 700 suspects in California crimes, 200 in the Los Angeles area. But not any more. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREBlues bury Kings early with four first-period goals Whether the change is due to pressure from American officials, shifts in the Mexican high court’s composition or a simple change in attitude, the result is the same. The decision is a boon for justice, although Mexico still has in effect its long-standing ban on extraditing its citizens who face potential death penalty sentences. Still, the court’s action should help to strengthen U.S.-Mexican relations by improving the two governments’ ability to work together on issues of common interest – including immigration.last_img read more