13 July 2013

African Ambassadors Call for More Actions Against HIV/Aids, TB, Malaria

Photo: Allan Gichigi/IRIN
Stigma remains a major problem

Members of the Permanent Representatives Committee, PRC, of the African Union Commission have called on member states to prioritize sharing, monitoring, and evaluation of data on AIDS, Tuberculosis and malaria with the commission in order to ensure that future reports reflect the situation in individual countries.

This call was made on Saturday during the ongoing African Union Summit holding in Abuja.

The PRC, which also comprises of ambassadors of various African countries, noted that global funding should be aligned to national strategies and priorities.

According to the diplomats, there is need for clearer benchmarks on utilisation of resources in order to increase accountability which they described as very critical.

Urging all member states to report to it on the three diseases regularly, they stated that more innovative domestic resource mobilisation by member states should be encouraged.

The treatment of tuberculosis and malaria has been reportedly hampered by drug resistance, hence causing major setbacks in the reduction of these health conditions in some countries. The PRC acknowledged this, noting that drug resistance is an emerging set back to the progress that has been made while much work is being done to prevent drug resistance, including promoting adherence to treatment.

"A report on conflict and post conflict areas and the impact of AIDS, TB and malaria is being prepared and will be issued at the question of owning programs while cross sectional involvement cannot be over emphasized," the committee stated.

They however advised member states to improve innovative domestic financing and emphasize the efficient use of available resources.

"In this regard, there is need to set concrete benchmarks on the efficient use of resource with the cost per capita and expenditure for all diseases," they said.

On the implementation of the Abuja Call for Accelerated Action Towards Universal Access to HIV/AIDS, TB and Malaria services 2010-2012 Progress Report, the PRC recommended to the Executive Council to take note of the progress report covering 2010-2012 on the implementation of the Abuja Call as well as all the recommendations contained in it.

They also stressed the need to further strengthen the national monitoring and evaluation systems to ensure valid and timely data for programming and decision making.

Earlier on, there had been an expert meeting from July 8-9, in which newer and stiffer health recommendations were made.

As a follow up to this, the PRC, after its meeting, urged the executive council of the AU Commission to endorse the recommendations for consideration and adoption, while also calling on the global funds to fight AIDS, TB and Malaria, to pursue efforts to ensure timely and sustainable equitable funding for the benefit of all affected countries.

Endorsing the draft agenda emanating from the special session of the summit last week, the PRC further requested that in the future reports, adequate information be provided on the situation in conflict and post conflict areas.

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