SOUTHERN African Development Community (SADC) member states have launched a campaign on total Malaria elimination in the region, expressing interest to buy biolarvicides from Tanzania.
The ‘Zero Malaria Starts with Me,’ campaign was first introduced in 2014 in Senegal and officially ratified by African Heads of State at the African Union Summit in 2018.
The campaign also aims at making the issue of malaria a top item of the agenda in various meetings of the SADC regional bloc to mobilise resources to sustain achievements attained in the fight against malaria to reach the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030.
The campaign also targets every individual from the Heads of State to the community levels.
Health, Community Development, Gender, Elders and Children Ummy Mwalimu described the campaign launch in Kibaha District as recognition to Tanzania’s achievements in Malaria control during the past 10 years.
Ms Mwalimu who doubles as Chairperson of the ministers responsible for health and HIV/ Aids launched the campaign on the SADC Malaria Day.
The minister noted all her SADC counterparts have agreed to buy biolarvicides from Tanzania Biotech Products Limited to start the campaign of spraying the larvicides in their countries.
However, the ministers said they will first seek technical support from Cuba on logistical issues of the larvicides and their sprays.
It was Cuba which gave technical support to Tanzania to establish the biotech products industry, the only biotech industry in Africa.
The facility has contributed to reduction of Malaria in Tanzania, with the municipalities procuring the product annually for spraying in various areas to terminate the mosquito larvae.
For SADC countries, she said, statistics indicate that there were great achievements attained in reducing malaria.
The statistics show the number of deaths from malaria have dropped by 39 per cent during the three-year period from 2015 to 2018.
Some SADC countries, including Botswana, South Africa, Eswatini and Comoro, are at advanced stages of total elimination of the deadly disease.
The achievements are a product of investing heavily in financial resources, political will and involvement of different stakeholders.