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UK pledges £1b to support Nigeria’s fight against malaria

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The United Kingdom has announced a significant contribution of £1 billion to support Nigeria’s efforts in combating malaria and other diseases over the period of 2024 to 2026.

The announcement was made by Health Adviser, British High Commission, Ebere Anyachukwu, during an event held in Abuja to mark World Malaria Day.

Anyachukwu emphasized the UK government’s commitment to global health initiatives, stating that the funds would be channeled through a global fund dedicated to mobilizing resources for countries to combat diseases effectively.

“The one billion pounds will be added to the funds from other donors, to be managed by the global fund, to tackle malaria and other diseases in Nigeria,” said Anyachukwu.

He highlighted the crucial role of these funds in providing essential resources such as insecticide-treated bed nets, diagnostic testing, and chemo prevention, especially in states where malaria is seasonal and poses a significant threat to children’s health.

“There are some states in Nigeria where malaria is seasonal. Those are states where chemo prevention is used to prevent children from coming down with malaria,” explained Anyachukwu.

The health adviser underscored the positive impact of global funding on reducing malaria-related deaths in Nigeria, citing statistics that indicated a significant decrease in mortality rates over the years.

“In 2008, the World Health Organisation (WHO) estimated that Nigeria had about 221,000 malaria-related deaths. But by 2022, the figure was about 189 deaths,” stated Anyachukwu.

Meanwhile, the Federal Ministry of Health reiterated Nigeria’s progress in the fight against malaria but emphasized the need for continued collaboration to achieve further improvements.

National Coordinator, National Malaria Elimination Programme, Godwin Ntadon, emphasized the importance of collective efforts in strengthening malaria control strategies and achieving equitable outcomes.

Representatives from international organizations, including the World Health Organization (WHO), reiterated their commitment to supporting Nigeria in the fight against malaria. They emphasized the need for innovative approaches and increased investment to accelerate progress towards malaria elimination.

In a related development, Ebonyi State government highlighted the persistent challenge of malaria in the state, with over 69 percent of hospital attendance attributed to the disease.

The state government reaffirmed its commitment to healthcare provision and malaria control efforts, citing various interventions aimed at reducing malaria prevalence.

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