The Director General of the National Agency for Control of AIDS (NACA), Sani Aliyu said Nigeria needs to stop dependence on foreign donor funds to run its health sector programme and response.
Speaking at the Health Watch Forum organised by Nigeria Health Watch in Abuja, Aliyu said much of Nigeria's funding contribution to its HIV response was spent on salaries, not commodities required.
"Seventy per cent of HIV response is driven by donors; 26% by federal and state governments but it is actually salaries and not commodities," he said.
He cited one round of funding in which the US government and Global Fund contributed $155 million, compared with $1.5 million put in by Nigeria.
"Most of the cost, when it comes to HIV is the commodities. What we need is to get down and be honest with ourselves; are we investing in health?" Aliyu queried.
"HIV is important because it affects the productive population. Health is an issue and we need to invest properly. We need to stop this dependency culture," he said.
Aliyu is among five professionals appointed last year to head major health agencies in Nigeria to speak on the forum's theme "Does leadership matter?"