The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberclosis and Malaria is to support programmes worth $225million to prevent and treat malaria in the country, even as Global Fund is now devising a new funding model that is expected to ensure strategic investment programmes that would be most effective, such as the malaria control programme in the country.
This was disclosed yesterday in Abuja, at the signing of grant agreement ceremony by the Minister of Health, Prof Onyebuchi Chukwu and the Deputy Executive Director of Global Fund, Mrs Debrework Zewdie, witnessed by the minister of State for Health, Dr Muhammad Ali Pate, Mr Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede, Chairman of Friends Africa, Alhaji Isa Yusuf Tata, representing business mogul, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, members of the Country Coordinating Mechanism and development partners.
While the current phase 2 grant of $167 million is to provide services, increase access to medicine and diagnostic tests that are critical to saving lives at the onset of malaria, an additional US $50million was approved by Global Fund to provide more long lasting insecticidal treated nets to Nigerians through the phase two project.
Speaking to journalists at the event, the deputy executive director, Global Fund, Mrs Debrework Zewdie, said that federal and state governments that can match and leverage investments in preventing and treating disease with public and private money, are more likely to win support from donor nations in the years to come.
Zewdie also disclosed that under the grants which are expected to last between 18 to 24 months, health workers in both public and private sectors would be trained and mass campaigns of awareness created among communities.
Earlier in his remarks, the Minister of Health, Prof Onyebuchi Chukwu, said the grants was made possible by the $10 million counterpart funding pledged by the federal government to facilitate the process.
He expressed the hope that with the lessons learned from phase 1, the current phase will not only be successful but also provide a successful model for all countries.
According to the minister, the support of the Global Fund, has invariably resulted in the scaling up of interventions against AIDS, TB and Malaria and with solid collaboration from the federal government, there are substantial reductions in the morbidity and mortality of these scourges.
During a transformation of the Global Fund’s grant management structure this year, Nigeria was identified as one of 20 high impact countries that is now receiving special attention.
Since its first grant from the Global Fund in 2005, Nigeria has been awarded grants worth US$980 million for the fight against HIV/AIDS, TB and Malaria.