Bill Gates says Donald Trump's decision to stop WHO funding is "as dangerous as it sounds"
The US move to withhold WHO funds as long as it awaits a review of how the coronavirus pandemic crisis was "mishandled" is “as dangerous as it sounds”, said the Microsoft founder.
April 15, 2020 / 07:48 PM IST
United States President Donald Trump’s decision to stop funding the World Health Organization has been deemed “dangerous” by philanthropist tycoon Bill Gates. He said on April 15 that the move to withhold WHO funds as long as it awaits a review of how the coronavirus pandemic crisis was "mishandled" is “as dangerous as it sounds”.
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Within a week of WHO declaring the spread of the novel coronavirus a public health crisis that demands international concern, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation had provided financial assistance worth $100 million to help curb the spread of COVID-19. A large chunk of the amount was directed to the WHO. The fund was meant to help conduct research to develop a vaccine, improve detection, better treatment facilities, etc.
The founder of Microsoft, who has been urging Trump to impose a countrywide lockdown since March, took to Twitter on April 15 and wrote:
The US President has said that once the WHO review report is out, it will expose the international organization's “severe mismanagement” and how it worked hand in glove with China to try and cover up the spread of the novel coronavirus.
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He also said: “Had the WHO done its job to get medical experts into China to objectively assess the situation on the ground and to call out China's lack of transparency, the outbreak could have been contained at its source with very little death.”
Notably, the US supports the WHO with $400 million to $500 million in funds annually, whereas China contributes to barely about $40 million.
Responding to this, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, WHO, requested the US to not politicize the pandemic outbreak.To follow our full coverage on coronavirus, click here