DP World, the logistics solutions company rebuilding the Somaliland Port of Berbera has handed the country a major boost in the fight against the COVID-19 with medical supplies.
The medical supplies are expected to arrive at Berbera where DP world is also building an economic zone where Somaliland’s National Committee for Preparedness and Prevention of COVID-19 will receive the supplies.
The supplies include ventilators for life support, intubation kits and significant quantities of personal protective equipment for doctors, nurses, first responders and other emergency staff.
They also include protective gloves, medical masks, face shields, and gowns. The supplies are sourced from various countries including the United Arab Emirates.
The shipments will also include large quantities of vital medicines, 5,000 rapid COVID-19 testing kits.
Supachai Wattanaveerachai, CEO OF DP World Berbera, said: “Although there are still only a few confirmed cases in Somaliland to-date, we have seen the devastating effect of the virus in other countries around the world.
“Given this threat, we felt it is important to support the government and be able to test suspected cases of the virus inside the country.
“With the outstanding support from our team in Dubai, we have successfully shipped bulk medical supplies, and protective and testing equipment to distribute in Somaliland.”
Somaliland medical technicians have already been sent to Kenya for professional training in effective diagnosis techniques.
The country has also offered to assist its neighbours in Somalia and Yemen with checks for the deadly virus once the testing procedures are operational.
“There is a shortage of protective masks in Berbera, so we took the opportunity to work with the Mayor and Governor of Berbera to have local people produce homemade masks.
We wanted to unleash the outstanding innovative and commercial potential in the community in Somaliland, to help address the issues of high cost and limited supply of masks,” Wattanaveerachai said.
The DP World Berbera team has been constantly reinforcing health messages to its own staff, families and stakeholders, in line with the latest guidance from the World Health Organisation, and sent out a clear message that Social Distancing is a critical demand and not an option for our community to remain safe.
DP World remains Somaliland biggest international corporate partner with a US Dollar 442 million investment in the expansion of the Port of Berbera.
The United Arab Emirates to has played a pivotal role in community development projects in the horn of Africa nation which remains unrecognized internationally but has been in the forefront in the fight against the coronavirus.
BY ODINDO AYIEKO