Nigeria Launches $62 Billion Trust Fund to combat HIV/AIDS

By Edward Samuel, Abuja

0 435

In a landmark initiative announced at the 2023 World AIDS Day commemoration, Nigeria government has Launched $62 Billion HIV/AIDS Trust Fund in Global Fight Against Epidemic.

READ ALSO:WAD: Nigeria Unveils Policies to Combat HIV/AIDS and Viral Hepatitis

The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Senator George Akume who unveiled the groundbreaking private sector-driven HIV/AIDS Trust Fund of Nigeria, said with a staggering commitment of sixty-two billion Naira, the unprecedented move, in collaboration with the Nigerian Business Coalition Against AIDS (NiBUCAA), positions Nigeria at the forefront of efforts to eradicate AIDS as a public health threat.

“The theme of this year’s World AIDS Day, “Communities: Leadership to End AIDS by 2030,” I applaud the National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA) for its steadfast commitment and leadership in the fight against HIV/AIDS in the country”. He said.

Acknowledging the resilience of communities, Senator Akume emphasized their pivotal role in achieving global goals.

“Under the administration of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the Nigerian government affirms its commitment to ending AIDS by 2030, ensuring comprehensive access to HIV services across the nation. The unveiling of the national strategic framework for 2023 to 2027 marks a crucial step towards sustainable HIV response, with states taking a leading role”. He added.

Senator Akume called on the organized private sector to fulfill its pledge in supporting the government’s efforts for an HIV-free generation, especially focusing on preventing mother-to-child transmission.

“The new business model unveiled aims to ensure the success of Nigeria’s ambitious HIV response, the importance of global solidarity and shared responsibilities”. He said.

The Secretary expressed gratitude for the unwavering support from the United Nations, the Government and people of the United States of America, and the Global Fund in sustaining efforts to keep people living with HIV alive in Nigeria.

“As the nation commemorates the 2023 World AIDS Day, the launch of the HIV/AIDS Trust Fund signifies a bold stride towards a future where AIDS is no longer a public health threat in Nigeria”. He added.

In his welcome address, the Director General of the National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA),  Dr. Gambo Aliyu highlighted the crucial theme for this year: “Communities: Leadership to End AIDS by 2030.” Emphasizing the pivotal role of community leadership.

Dr. Aliyu expressed gratitude to various sectors, including persons living with HIV, policymakers, religious leaders, civil society organizations, and the media, for their essential contributions in overcoming social, cultural, legal, and economic barriers hindering progress.

“Amid the challenges posed by the COVID-19 epidemic, I commended Nigeria’s remarkable capacity for HIV case identification at the community level, making the country’s HIV response the most COVID-19 resilient globally over the past four years. 

Dr. Aliyu acknowledged the pressing need for sustainability in the fight against AIDS, outlining collaborative initiatives by the Nigerian government, the United States government, UNAIDS, and the Global Fund to ensure the country’s ownership and sustainability of the national response beyond 2030.

While remembering those who lost their lives to AIDS and celebrating the heroes in the ongoing battle, Dr. Aliyu stressed the possibility of achieving an AIDS-free society through collective efforts. He urged unity in demanding HIV services, supporting infected individuals, and ending stigma and discrimination against persons living with HIV/AIDS.

Dr. Aliyu conveyed optimism about Nigeria’s potential to end AIDS before 2030 with the support of community leaders. He affirmed that the nation could overcome stigma, discrimination, and the transmission of HIV to newborns, drawing parallels with successful responses to Ebola and COVID-19.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *