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Friday, September 18, 2020

AMCOW boss Taal rebuts comments on Ebola

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In a letter sent to The Standard over the weekend, Oseloka Zikora head of communications at Amcow stated: “Our attention has been drawn to a report published by The Standard newspaper, Gambia on September 18 2014 being a story culled from an interview with the Thomson Reuters Foundation and recirculated by several online media including allafrica.com. The story erroneously credited the Amcow executive secretary, Mr Bai Mass Taal as alluding that there was a positive side to the Ebola virus currently ravaging parts of West Africa.

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“The correct position is that whereas Mr Taal spoke to the Thomson Reuters Foundation, he only asserted that the current top priority being given to the provision of clean water and improved sanitation as a result of the Ebola outbreak was a positive development for the sector as the multiplier effect does not only help in fighting the spread of the virus but other deadly bacteria and germs. That however should not have been interpreted to mean that there is a positive side to the Ebola outbreak. 

“Mr Taal wishes to reiterate that there is nothing positive about a virus that has caused over 4000 deaths and has the potential of leading to about 20000 more if all efforts are not made to halt the spread. He commends the top priority being placed on the provision of clean water and improved sanitation in public places especially in schools and markets as part of these efforts to stop the spread of the Ebola virus.

“Amcow therefore wishes to state that this is obviously a misinterpretation of Mr Taal’s response to the reporter’s leading question and the opinion should not also have been credited to African ministers responsible for water since the Amcow executive secretary did not expressly say that he spoke on their behalf.”

The African Ministers’ Council on Water was formed in 2002 in Abuja Nigeria, primarily to promote cooperation, security, social and economic development and poverty eradication among member states through the effective management of the continent’s water resources and provision of water supply services.

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