Almost one million signatures have been secured for an online petition calling for the resignation of the Director-General of the World Health Organisation (WHO).
The pettion was initiated some two months ago and as at April 13, 2020 had clocked over 930,000 signatures with one million being the main target.
The petition reads that “On January 23rd, 2020 Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus declines to declare China virus outbreak as a global health emergency” although that was done later in March.
“Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus under estimated the coronavirus. We strongly think Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus is not fit for his role as WHO Director General. We call for the Immediate Resignation of Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus,” the petition stated.
The petition also claimed “A lot of us are really disappointed, we believe WHO is supposed to be political neutral. Without any investigation, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus solely believes on the death and infected numbers that the Chinese government provided with them.”
Adhanom Ghebreyesus, who is from Ethiopia, has come under pressure in recent weeks triggered by a campaign by American politicians who want him out of the job.
Campaign by US politicians
The U.S politicians accuse Tedros of allowing China to under-report the impact of the virus in Wuhan, where the outbreak started.
China has been accused of significantly downplaying its official virus cases, with some estimates suggesting their death toll could be as high as 40,000.
But many African leaders came to the defence of Tedros, warning the US against such a campaign at this time of a global crisis.
Dr Tedros has said that it is dangerous to play politics with the lives of people, especially during a crisis moment like this.
He said “No time to waste. Let’s focus on saving lives. Collaboration across party lines important to ensure national unity to fight the virus more effectively.
National unity is a foundation for global solidarity. When we do this, we quarantine political covid. Stop politicising.”
The WHO Director General has also recently
revealed that he had received death threats following the outbreak of the coronavirus.
Ghebreyesus said he has for months been abused racially and called names like ”black or negro”.
He told journalists that “I can tell you personal attacks that have been going on for more than 2-3 months. Abuses or racist comments, giving me names…even death threats. I don’t give a damn.”