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Buhari names Dangote chair of End Malaria Council, tasks members on new strategies

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Buhari names Dangote chair of End Malaria Council

President Muhammadu Buhari has appointed Aliko Dangote as the pioneer Chairman of the National End Malaria Council (NEMC) in the country.

The council was set up by President Muhammadu Buhari to eliminate the scourge of malaria in the country.

The inauguration, which took place at the Presidential Banquet Hall, Abuja, on Tuesday, was well attended by a number of dignitaries.

The President at the event charged members of the council on new strategies to combat the disease in the country.

President cited the World Health Organisation (WHO) report of 2021 which showed that Nigeria alone accounted for 27 per cent of all cases of malaria and 32 per cent of deaths globally, expressing concern that the age-long disease had remained a major public health challenge in the country.

He said: “Our inauguration today will therefore ensure that malaria elimination remains a priority on our agenda, with strong political commitment from leaders at all levels. Additionally, the End Malaria Council will provide a platform to advocate for more funding to protect and sustain progress made so far by our country, and put us on a pathway to ending malaria for good.”

President Buhari also thanked the Chairman of the African Leaders Malaria Alliance (ALMA), President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya, the Executive Secretary of ALMA, RBM Partnership in Nigeria for their continuous support to the Federal Ministry of Health and the malaria programme, in particular.

He hailed the contributions of the Global Fund, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the President’s Malaria Initiative, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, WHO, UNICEF, UK Foreign and Commonwealth Development Office, other implementing partners and the private sector.

Speaking on his appointment, Dangote thanked the President and all members of the Council for entrusting him with the enormous responsibility, pledging to work hard to achieve the mandate.

He noted: “I must confess that this resonates with my current role as the Nigerian Ambassador for Malaria, my role on the Global End Malaria Council and with the work that my Foundation is doing to mobilise the private sector to support malaria control in Nigeria and Africa at large.

Read also: Newsapers’ll beam spotlight on malaria when clueless Buhari prioritises health sector, Aisha Yesufu tells Garba

“In 2016, Aliko Dangote Foundation supported the development of a Private Sector Engagement Strategy for Malaria Elimination in Nigeria. The document highlighted private sector support in the fight against malaria as well as a strategy for private sector engagement and steps for implementation. In fulfilling our longstanding commitment/investment to end malaria, my Foundation will continue to support all efforts at mobilising all sectors to end malaria in Nigeria and Africa at large.

“We will work hard to ensure that malaria elimination remains high on Nigeria’s agenda with strong political commitment from leaders at all levels. We will advocate at the National and State levels to ensure sufficient funding for malaria elimination.

“The Council under my watch will drive progress toward malaria elimination by focusing on two key areas: Ensure that malaria elimination remains high on Nigeria agenda with strong political commitment from leaders at all levels; and advocate at all levels to ensure sufficient funding to protect the progress made so far, sustain the progress, and be on an irreversible pathway to ending malaria for good.”

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