TZ commits 2.3bn/- to Global Fund

TANZANIA has committed to contribute one million US dollars (about 2.3bn/-) to support the Global Fund, while also calling upon other nations to fulfill their obligations in beefing up the fund to support the fight against AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.

Dr Mpango said this at the conference in New York City on Wednesday, on the sidelines of the annual high-level meeting of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).  The conference was hosted by United States President Joe Biden.

The VP is in the United States to represent President Samia Suluhu Hassan at the annual UNGA meeting which was officially opened on September 13, this year. He was due to address the UN General Assembly later on Thursday.

During the conference on Wednesday, the Global Fund secured 14.25 billion US dollars in crucial new funding, after decades of progress against the diseases were derailed by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Allow me to officially announce Tanzania’s pledge of one million US dollars as a contribution to the Global Fund’s Seventh Replenishment…I appeal to all of us to take an effort in the same spirit, as we demonstrate and break another record on fundraising for the noble cause that Global Fund stands for,” Dr Mpango said.

The fund, a public/private alliance set up in 2002, is seeking 18 billion US dollars for its next three-year funding cycle from governments, civil society and the private sector. Before Wednesday’s conference, it had already raised more than a third of the total.

“At this Seventh Replenishment, I am calling upon you to step up once again and raise at least 18 billion dollars for the next three years. This is a minimum amount to get the world back on track towards ending HIV/AIDS, TB and Malaria and I believe we can even exceed this target,” Dr Mpango stated.

He added that the current global crises have diminished the recovery effort of most economies, following the Covid-19 pandemic, adding that most countries are still facing new challenges in achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Dr Mpango further added that Tanzania appreciates the historic cooperation with the Global Fund, which had positive results that led to the reduction of the death toll caused by AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria

He thanked the Global Fund Board for supporting Tanzania for many years, as well as thanking and congratulating the governments around the world, organisations, institutions and individuals for their contributions to the Fund over the past 20 years.

He further added that Tanzania is committed to achieving the international goal of ending AIDS by 2030, by using new technology and innovative strategies.

He told the conference that despite the success achieved in dealing with AIDS, TB and Malaria, Tanzania is still facing the challenge of new AIDS infections, especially among young people aged between 15-24.

Moreover, he said that in dealing with TB, the nation is still facing obstacles of limited access to diagnostic services for the disease, especially in areas with important and vulnerable people, including mine workers, fishermen and prisoners.

During the conference, US President Biden said “This is an investment that will save another 20 million lives, reduce mortality from these diseases another 64 per cent in the next four years.”

“Thank you all for stepping up, especially in a challenging global economic environment, and I ask you, keep it going,” urged Biden.

“What’s happened today is actually an unparalleled mobilisation of resources for global health,” said Global Fund Executive Director Peter Sands.

“For the government and people of Malawi, this is not a conference but a life saver,” Lazarus Chakwera, the President of Malawi, said earlier in the day after pledging 1million US dollars.

According to UNAIDS, there were 990,000 adults and children in Malawi living with HIV in 2021, and USAID says that tuberculosis is a “major public health problem in Malawi”.

Among the donors, the US has pledged the most at 6billion US dollars.

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