Africa needs solid health financing: VP
Blessings Chidakwa-Herald Reporter
The strengthening of the finance system of Africa’s health sector is pivotal as it will ensure workable financing of programmes, Vice President Kembo Mohadi has said.
Speaking at the 22nd International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa (ICASA) in Harare yesterday, Vice President Mohadi said Africa has been lagging behind for too long, but it was time to walk the talk.
“The discussions from this conference will for a long-time remain etched in our memories,” said VP Mohadi.
“I also take the opportunity to thank all speakers for the unanimous call for strengthening domestic financing of the health sector of Africa.
“Such an initiative will ensure sustainable financing of programmes in health.”
VP Mohadi also took time to acknowledge the presence of Mozambican President Filipe Nyusi and his wife, who was in Victoria Falls being hosted by First Lady Dr Auxillia Mnangagwa.
“Your presence has made this conference quite befitting. I hope and trust, Your Excellency, that you will find time to sample out our humble facilities and find whether they are useful to your requirements. We must always remember that Zimbabwe and Mozambique share a history of togetherness that stretches as far back as the liberation struggle of this country in which Mozambican people paid the supreme sacrifice,” he said.
VP Mohadi also said it would be amiss if President Nyusi failed to travel to Victoria Falls as his wife had already visited one of the world’s seven wonders.
Harare Metropolitan Provincial Affairs and Devolution Minister, Charles Tawengwa, said it was exciting to host the ICASA conference as the province had a decentralised developmental structure that also covers the area of HIV and AIDS.
Minister Tawengwa said the structure incorporates all Government ministries, departments, agencies, and non-governmental organisations.
As a result, there is robust and vibrant HIV and AIDS programming in the entire country.
“This has significantly lowered the number of new HIV infections. These programmes are largely driven by communities under the guidance of the National AIDS Council, the provincial AIDS committee and developmental partners.
“The interventions are in sync and blend well with this year’s World AIDS Day 2023 which says ‘Let communities lead’. With communities at the forefront, we are assured to achieve the universal goal of ending AIDS as a public health threat by 2030,” he said.
The ICASA 2023 started yesterday and ends on Saturday.
It has brought together key stakeholders from across Africa and beyond to share experiences and achievements of the remarkable progress made in reducing new HIV infections and increasing access to treatment.
ICASA is a major and only biennial international AIDS conference which takes place in Africa.
Owing to the numerous interventions, Zimbabwe has made significant progress in achieving set objectives towards ending AIDS, becoming one of five countries that have achieved the UNAIDS 95-95-95 targets before the targeted 2025.