Mbabane, 10 May 2019 – Eswatini Business Leaders met Friday to discuss supporting Eswatini’s End Malaria Fund. The Fund has three main objectives: eliminate domestic transmission of malaria in the Kingdom of Eswatini by 2022; sustain elimination thereafter through surveillance, testing, and case management; and support malaria elimination at the sub-regional and regional levels.
“Over the years, we have seen how the private sector, working with Government and other stakeholders, has effectively contributed to the implementation of priority national initiatives. These include HIV and AIDS, poverty reduction, job creation and the ease of doing business, to name but a few. I am happy that His Majesty’s Government can continue to count on the private sector to discuss strategies to support the continental and regional initiatives for a malaria free generation,” said the Right Hon. Prime Minister Ambrose Mandvulo Dlamini.
With malaria incidence and mortality rates across Africa down since 2010 and an estimated 51 million cases and 273 thousand deaths avoided in 2017 compared to 2010, Eswatini is a leader with ~2 cases per thousand persons at risk and ~5 deaths per 100,000 persons at risk. The Minister for Health told captains of industry that Malaria used to be a leading cause of death in Eswatini, but over the years significant progress has been made with strong leadership and international support and that the tools for elimination exist. However, this will largely depend on domestic financing. Sustaining financing is critical because everytime there has been a decrease in resources there has been a resurgence in cases. During the meeting the Minister for Finance presented on the regulations for the establishment of the Fund under the Public Finance Act, 2017. The Minister invited the private sector and individuals to make financial and in kind contributions to support Malaria Elimination.
Health is linked to social and economic development. Eliminating Malaria by 2020 will provide a solid foundation for human capital development needed to sustain a productive workforce to achieve Eswatini’s Strategic Roadmap for economic transformation contributing towards achievement of the African Union’s Agenda 2063, to create a prosperous Africa built on inclusive growth and sustainable development. The Kingdom of Eswatini has made tremendous progress in its malaria response and has been declared ready for malaria elimination by the World Health Organisation—one of eight such countries in Africa.
On 1 July 2018 at the African Union Summit, His Majesty King Mswati III in his capacity as the Chairperson of the African Leaders Malaria Alliance (ALMA) launched the Zero Malaria Starts with Me Campaign with President Macky Sall of the Republic of Senegal, a continent wide public-facing campaign for a malaria-free Africa. The campaign reignites grass-roots movement for individuals, families, communities, religious leaders, private sector, political leaders, and other members of society to take full responsibility to defeat malaria. The following month, the Kingdom of Eswatini was signatory to the Windhoek Declaration on Malaria Elimination, which called on SADC Member States to, among other things, increase resource allocation from national Governments to address the gap in funding and supportive policies to promote malaria elimination.
His Majesty King Mswati III will launch the End Malaria Fund on 31 May 2019 in Mandvulo, Lozitha, Kingdom of Eswatini. The Fund will close the USD5 million funding gap required to meet the bold and ambitious targets of the Revised Malaria Elimination Strategic Plan (2015-2020) to eliminate Malaria in the Kingdom of Eswatini. The Fund, which was established by Legal Notice No. 21 of 2019, fulfils His Majesty King Mswati III’s directive to establish a national End Malaria Fund. The King committed 5 million Emalangeni as seed funding towards the establishment of the Fund. The operations of the Fund are governed by a Board of Directors composed of senior representatives of the Government, private sector, and local communities, which oversees this Public Private Partnership (PPP) Fund.
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