Our attention has been drawn to a story making the headlines that claimed ECOWAS has ordered a package of COVID-19 Organics (CVO) medicine from a third country.
We wish to dissociate ECOWAS and its health Institution, West Africa Health Organization (WAHO), from this claim and to inform the general public that we have not ordered the said CVO medication.
As part of its mandate to safeguard and improve the health of the region’s population, WAHO remains committed to promoting rational traditional medicine practices and products in the ECOWAS region and over the years have worked consistently with the Member States to scientifically investigate plant medicines of proven efficacy. These products are documented in our ECOWAS Pharmacopoeia of Traditional Medicines, the second edition of which will be published in the next few weeks. WAHO has also in the recent past identified nurtured and supported centers of excellence in traditional medicine across the ECOWAS region.
We are aware that several claims of a COVID-19 cure have been made in different parts of the world, but we can only support and endorse products that have been shown to be effective through scientific study. For this reason, WAHO is collaborating with relevant partners including WHO, Africa CDC, national, regional and international research consortia to promote the scientific search for a cure. We are working with the Member States on some of the medications available for clinical trials and for use on a compassionate basis in selected severe cases. Some of the traditional medicine centers of excellence in the ECOWAS region are also currently investigating products of potential efficacy.
ECOWAS Commission and WAHO will continue to focus on delivering on the decisions made by ECOWAS Heads of State and Government at their recent Extraordinary Summit on the fight against Covid-19, one of which is to strengthen cooperation among the Member States in research, training and experience sharing in health matters in general, and in the fight against Covid-19 in particular.