It’s been almost a week since Cyclone Idai slammed into the Southern part of Africa. Watching the humanitarian crisis unfolding, following the landfall of this category 2 cyclone, it shows that our continent is totally unprepared for the extremities associated with climate change manifesting around our planet.

Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Malawi have all declared emergencies and appealed for humanitarian assistance. African countries must quickly take the lead to mobilise a humanitarian response in support of our brothers and sisters.

With about 1,000 people now confirmed dead, buildings flattened and survivors struggling to find hard surfaces to cling to, I call on our continental organization, the African Union (AU), to lead an emergency response to help save the lives of affected persons in our sister countries.

In the past, Ghana showed leadership and led such emergency efforts such as during the Ebola outbreak in some of our West African neighbouring states. It will be a great sense of pride if our President, Nana Akufo-Addo, rallies his colleagues to mobilise an African-led support package to alleviate the harrowing stories we are beginning to see on our screens.

Our prayers are with the victims of the cyclone.

John Dramani Mahama 
Former President of Ghana 
Accra. March 21, 2019