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His Majesty King Mswati III of the Kingdom of Swaziland nominated chair of the African Leaders Malaria Alliance

Swaziland recognized for progress against malaria; on track to eliminate by 2020

ADDIS ABABA, ETHIOPIA (30 January 2017) – At a time of historic progress toward a malaria-free Africa, the African Leaders Malaria Alliance (ALMA) today nominated His Majesty King Mswati III of Swaziland, as its next chair.

His Majesty King Mswati III succeeds H.E. Idriss Déby Itno President of Chad, as Chair of ALMA. The announcement came at the ALMA Head of State and Government meeting during the 28th African Union Summit. During the meeting, ALMA presented its 2017 ALMA Awards for Excellence. Swaziland was one of seven countries recognized for significant achievements in malaria control and elimination over the last five years.

“The Kingdom of Swaziland welcomes the opportunity to chair ALMA.” said the Right Honourable Prime Minister, H.E. Dr. Barnabas S. Dlamini on behalf of His Majesty King Mswati III. “Malaria control and elimination has been a priority for Swaziland. Through my commitment and that of my people, I have provided significant domestic resources to combat malaria. I am pleased with our progress and look forward to eliminating this terrible disease from the countries. Regional cooperation has been key to Swaziland’s success. In my role as ALMA Chair, I look forward to working with other African Heads of State and Government to achieve a malaria-free Africa.”

Swaziland is one of three Southern African countries on track to eliminate malaria by 2020, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). The Kingdom of Swaziland has made significant progress in scaling-up malaria control interventions, leading to a significant reduction in malaria burden in Swaziland. The Kingdom of Swaziland was the first country in Africa to introduce a malaria elimination scorecard to enhance tracking, accountability and action towards malaria elimination.

“We welcome His Majesty King Mswati III of Swaziland as our next chair of ALMA,” said Joy Phumaphi, Executive Secretary of ALMA. “The Kingdom’s leadership in fighting malaria is a powerful model for the continent. The commitment at every level in the Kingdom of Swaziland is driving remarkable progress. Fighting malaria is a priority, and it is paying off.

WHO estimates that the the Kingdom of Swaziland decreased malaria incidence and malaria mortality by more than 40 percent between 2010 and 2015. Swaziland also reduced its reported number of malaria cases to 157, with five malaria-related deaths in 2015. Swaziland is among Africa’s leaders in terms of the proportion of the population protected with indoor residual spraying, with a reported coverage rate of 97 percent. Swaziland has also implemented a comprehensive surveillance strategy as part of its national control program. The Kingdom of Swaziland is chairing the Elimination 8 initiative (E8), which is working to strengthen regional coordination in order to achieve elimination in each of the E8 member countries and reduce cross-border malaria transmission.

Other countries receiving ALMA Awards include Botswana, Cabo Verde, Chad, Comoros, DRC, Ethiopia, and Uganda.

About ALMA

Founded in 2009, ALMA is a ground-breaking coalition of African Heads of State and Government working across the Kingdom of Swaziland and regional borders to achieve a malaria-free Africa by 2030. All African Union member countries are members of ALMA. The ALMA Scorecard for Accountability & Action is an important tool, which tracks progress and drives action.

The ALMA Awards for Excellence celebrate exemplary leadership in malaria control and elimination efforts. The Awards are chosen by an independent selection committee comprised of leaders and experts in the areas of health, academia and the private sector.

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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: to accelerate progress towards an integrated, prosperous and inclusive Africa, at peace with itself, playing a dynamic role in the continental and global arena, effectively driven by an accountable, efficient and responsive Commission.
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For media enquiries, please contact:

Dr. Adiel Mushi, Malaria Focal Person, African Union Commission
Tel: +251 962 4 88800

Richard King, Portland Communications
Ethiopia Tel: +251 (0) 929 228408
Tel: 44 (0) 20 7554 1600

Saleemah Abdul-Ghafur, ALMA
Tel: +251 929 228402

For media enquiries, please contact:

Links and directory:
About ALMA Factsheet
Malaria in Africa Factsheet