24 Jan 2011

Political instability cited

The Global Fund has temporarily halted disbursements of funds to principal recipients of grants in Côte d’Ivoire due to political instability in the country. The Fund is also taking measures to safeguard stocks of medicines and other supplies funded through these grants.

Côte d'Ivoire plunged into a tense political crisis after the incumbent president, Laurent Gbagbo, refused to concede electoral defeat to his challenger, Alassane Ouattara, following a presidential run-off poll held on 28 November 2010. The United Nations said that more than 200 people have been killed in violence. According to the news agency Reuters, the World Bank and International Monetary Fund have cut off all funding to incumbent leader Laurent Gbagbo for refusing to step down.

The Global Fund said that stocks of 8.6 million insecticide-treated mosquito nets in the country will not be distributed for now due to fears of vandalism or misuse. However, the Global Fund is allowing procurement and distribution of life-saving drugs to continue, providing the agencies distributing the drugs obtain prior authorisation from the Fund.

Côte d’Ivoire has active grants for all three diseases, representing investments of about $217 million over the life of the grants.

Information for this article was taken from “Global Fund freezes some Ivory Coast aid,” Reuters, 11 January 2011, at http://af.reuters.com/article/topNews/idAFJOE70A0BT20110111.

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