António Guterres: "Combating Ebola requires freedom of movement, access, security". Photo MONUSCO/Marylene Seguy
On the 2nd day of his visit to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, UN Secretary-General António Guterres on Sunday, September 1, 2019, visited the Ebola Treatment Center in Mangina, a rural municipality in Beni territory, North-Kivu province, where the first cases of Ebola had been detected a year ago.
At the end of the visit, the UN chief, speaking to the press, said an appropriate multi-pronged response was needed to end the epidemic.
For the UN Secretary-General, the fight against insecurity must be linked to the Ebola response in all regions affected by the pandemic.
"Combating Ebola requires freedom of movement, access, security. Our solidarity must be expressed through increased cooperation between MONUSCO and the Armed Forces of the DRC capable, first, of containing and, if possible, overcoming the threat of terrorist acts of the ADF, but also of doing everything possible to demobilize for the other local armed groups, "he said.
Antonio Guterres notes, however, that only 15% of the funds pledged for the Ebola response have been made available.
Guterres : If we lose a week in the response to Ebola, we can lose the war against Ebola.
"The funding pledged until the end of the year more or less aligns with the needs in the Ebola response, but only 15% has been disbursed so far. This means that there is in the Ebola response a liquidity problem which is extremely serious. And if we lose a week in the response to Ebola, we do not lose a week, we can lose the war against Ebola, "he warned.
This same Sunday at the Mangina Ebola Treatment Center, the UN chief witnessed the release of four cured people, including an infant; survivors to whom he symbolically handed a Certificate of Being Cured.