UAE sends urgent medical supplies to Sierra Leone after fuel tanker disaster

More than 100 people were killed and dozens injured in the explosion in Freetown

The UAE has sent medical aid to Sierra Leone. Wam
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The UAE sent a plane carrying 16 tonnes of medical aid to Sierra Leone on Wednesday.

The donation will mitigate the effects of a fuel tanker explosion that killed more than 100 people in the capital, Freetown, and injured dozens, most of whom were women or children.

The explosion occurred on Friday night when an oil tanker collided with a bus as it pulled into a petrol station in Wellington, a suburb east of Freetown.

Fuel spilt from the tanker and officials and witnesses said large crowds gathered to collect it. But the vehicle exploded, killing scores of people and leaving many more severely burnt.

Following the disaster, the UAE expressed its solidarity with the government and people of Sierra Leone.

It emphasised its keenness to help hospitals in Freetown by providing the injured with professional medical care and supporting the city’s medical teams.

News agency Wam said the UAE had long been committed to helping victims of disasters and other people in need.

The Emirates has spent Dh143 million ($38.9m) supporting development, humanitarian and charity work in Sierra Leone, most notably in the health sector.

The Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Field Hospital, with a capacity of 100 beds, was established in Port Loko to treat Covid-19 patients.

The UAE sent seven tonnes of urgently needed medical supplies to Sierra Leone earlier in the pandemic and has strengthened the country’s electricity grid by establishing solar energy generators in Freetown, in addition to launching educational projects in several cities.

Updated: November 10, 2021, 1:39 PM