THE UK Government is to match up to £5 million of public donations made during Tuesday’s friendly football international between England and Scotland, Downing Street has announced.
An appeal on behalf of Unicef’s Ebola fund, featuring England captain Wayne Rooney, Scottish manager Gordon Strachan and Scotland star Darren Fletcher, will be broadcast during the match at Celtic Park.
Meanwhile, the Government is to also invest a further £1.34 million in new research to fight the deadly virus, which has killed more than 5000 people.
Prime Minister David Cameron announced the new funds after securing a commitment from leading world powers at the G20 summit in Brisbane, Australia, to “do what is necessary to ensure the international effort can extinguish the outbreak”.
Among the projects to be backed with the new money are a University of Westminster team developing a portable battery-powered device to test body fluids for the disease, an Oxford University study on predicting the geographical spread of the virus, and anthropological research to establish the best methods of working with local populations in preventing infection.
The UK has already committed around £230 million to the fight against Ebola and is taking a lead in healthcare operations in Sierra Leone, one of the three west African countries worst affected.