Your Majesty King and Ingwenyama Mswati III and Chair of ALMA
Indlovukazi Queen Mother
His Majesty King Letsie III
Your Royal Highnesses
His Excellency Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, Former President of United Republic of Tanzania and founding Chair of ALMA and Member of the End Malaria council
His Excellency Right Honourable Prime Minister
Honourable Deputy Prime Minister
Her Excellency Amira El Fadil, Commissioner for Social Affairs of the African Union Commission
Cabinet Ministers here present
Executive Secretary of ALMA
Captains of industry and members of the private sector
Ladies and gentlemen
I am delighted to be here today in the Kingdom of Eswatini. This is a very important event in the fight against malaria, not only for Eswatini, but for all malaria affected countries.
As we have already heard, malaria has been one of the great success stories in public health, with 23% reduction in incidence and a 40% reduction in mortality since 2010 in Africa.
However, recent data are showing that progress has slowed. In order to get us back on track, the RBM partnership to End Malaria and the African Union have developed the continent-wide campaign; Zero Malaria Starts with Me co-launched by His Majesty King Mswati III in July last year.
This campaign builds community ownership of malaria efforts and increases awareness of and political commitment for malaria elimination among key stakeholders to ensure it is a national priority:
- It engages political actors to ensure malaria elimination remains a priority on the political agenda;
- It encourages the diversification of funding to increase financial resources for malaria elimination interventions, including domestic resources, and establishing innovative public-private partnerships;
- It creates a community-based movement to increase community awareness and ownership of anti-malaria interventions.
I am delighted that today the Kingdom of Eswatini is launching the Zero Malaria Starts with Me campaign with a goal of eliminating malaria in the country by 2022.
The Zero Malaria campaign highlights the need for diversification of resources, including though government domestic resources, as well as from the private sector.
This is why the launch of the End Malaria Fund, the first of its kind in Africa, is so key, especially as it emphasises the important contribution the private sector can play in the fight against malaria. Additionally, the participation of multiple sectors in the fund is consistent with the goals of Zero Malaria Starts with Me campaign.
I hope that this innovative approach, championed by His Majesty King Mswati the third, will be taken up throughout Africa. With increased domestic resource commitments from both governments and the private sector, we will surely be back on track!
Your Majesty, I would like to ensure you of all the support of the RBM Partnership to End Malaria in accomplishing your vision.
Just last week at the World Health Assembly, I had the pleasure to see both Argentina and Algeria declared malaria free by WHO. I sincerely hope that we will be having a similar celebration with Eswatini in the very near future!
I thank you,
Zero Malaria Starts with Me!