African Union Heads of State and Government take key steps to accelerate efforts to end AIDS, TB and Malaria as public health threats by 2030
Endorse key continental initiative to catalyse action to end Malaria
Nouakchott, 7 July 2018: African Heads of State and Government on Sunday during the AIDS Watch Africa Heads of State and Government annual meeting took key steps to accelerate Africa’s response to the three major epidemics of AIDS, TB and Malaria. During the meeting the leaders considered the AIDS Watch Africa Progress Report on the ongoing evidence-based advocacy, data-driven accountability and resource mobilisation efforts to end AIDS, TB and Malaria by 2030.
“More than ever before we have a historic opportunity to end AIDS, TB and Malaria in this generation due to advancements in technology, better diagnostics, medicines, information systems and improved delivery systems at the community level. We cannot achieve the aspirations for bold and ambitious socio-economic transformation in Agenda 2063 if we do not put health at the centre of our vision for development” said President Paul Kagame of Rwanda who is also the concurrent Chairperson of the African Union and AIDS Watch Africa.
During the meeting African Heads of State and Government were briefed on the significant milestones towards the establishment of the Africa Medicines Agency that will support regulatory harmonisation and facilitate medical product registration to ensure access to affordable and quality assured medicines. African Heads of State and Government also endorsed the 2018 Africa Scorecard on Domestic Financing for Health an important tool for promoting accountability in health financing. Heads of State also recommitted to further increase domestic resources allocated to health in the context of Africa’s increasing Gross Domestic Product and declining international support. The African leaders further pledged to support and work with the international community to support the next Global Fund replenishment for its role in life-saving interventions in AIDS, TB and Malaria the three biggest diseases in Africa
The meeting further commended the Commission for undertaking wide consultations on the Common Africa Position to the High Level Meeting on TB and endorsed the common Africa position on TB.
“TB is now the biggest public health threat in Africa not only impacting on Africa’s health security but also affecting Africa’s socio-economic transformation agenda. The United Nations High Level Meeting on TB in September this year provides us with a historic opportunity to advance Africa’s common position towards universal and equitable access to prevention, diagnosis, treatment, care and support while taking into consideration structural and operational barriers to the achievement of universal access” said President Cyril Matamela Ramaphosa of South Africa.
Heads of State and Government also endorsed the African Continental End TB Accountability Framework for Action and the End TB Scorecard initiative that will be produced annually.
During the meeting African leaders also endorsed the zero malaria starts with me campaign. The Zero Malaria Starts with Me is a continent-wide public-facing campaign for a malaria free Africa.
“Senegal's progress in the fight against malaria is an exemplary success story in public health, and we are particularly proud of the Zero Malaria Starts with Me Campaign. The Campaign will reignite grassroot movements in which individuals, families, communities, religious leaders, private sector, political leaders, and other members of the society pledge to take responsibility in the fight against malaria”, said President Macky Sall of Senegal.
“The Zero Malaria Starts with Me campaign further reinvigorates our commitment to eliminate malaria in Africa as we now call upon all our people at all levels to work with us in ridding our continent of this scourge. The implementation of this campaign will also depend on partnerships and on collaboration across sectors and amongst our population, for as government, we cannot win this fight against malaria alone” said His Majesty King Mswati III of eSwatini.
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About the African Union
The African Union spearheads Africa’s development and integration in close collaboration with African Union Member States, the Regional Economic Communities and African citizens. AU Vision An integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa, driven by its own citizens and representing a dynamic force in global arena. www.au.int
About AIDS Watch Africa
Created at the Abuja 2001 Special Summit, AIDS Watch Africa (AWA) is an Africa-led instrument to stimulate leaders into action and mobilize the resources needed to address AIDS, TB and Malaria in an effective, sustainable and accountable manner. www.aidswatchafrica.net