Home Health & Living NACA, N’Assembly, others commit to fight HIV/AIDS beyond 2030

NACA, N’Assembly, others commit to fight HIV/AIDS beyond 2030

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The National Agency for the Control of AIDS has partnered with the National Assembly, the United States Agency for International Development, the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS, and the Jhpiego to sustain the gains from the HIV response beyond 2030.

In 2016, United Nations member states committed to implementing a bold agenda to end the AIDS epidemic by 2030 during the United Nations General Assembly High-Level Meeting on Ending AIDS, held at United Nations Headquarters in New York.

The progressive, new, and actionable Political Declaration includes a set of specific, time-bound targets and actions that must be achieved by 2020 if the world is to get on the fast track and end the AIDS epidemic by 2030 within the framework of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Speaking on Sunday at the end of the two-day retreat themed, ‘Leadership for the sustainability of the HIV response: The role of the Legislative,’ in Lagos, the Director General of NACA, Dr Temitope Ilori, assured of the agency’s determination in providing leadership to driving an accelerated decline in new HIV infections in the country.

Ilori advocated an integrated approach that will foster synergy and yield maximum health benefits.

“We are here today to continue our efforts at targeting the eradication of HIV/AIDS by the year 2030. We are re-energised at fostering a commitment to the issues of HIV/AIDS with the legislators here present and help facilitate an efficient and sustainable response in Nigeria,” she stated.

The Country Director of UNAIDS, Dr Leo Zekeng, urged the leadership of the House of Representatives to scale up efforts and help in terms of legislation for resource allocation.

Zekeng called for increased awareness and improved accountability of resources to better manage the resources available to solve the major issues plaguing us.

He believes that the success achieved in the fight against HIV/AIDS in Nigeria will have an overbearing effect on the African continent’s success.

While also addressing the participants at the retreat, a seasoned Public Health Specialist and Country Director, Jhpiego, Oniyire Adetiloye called for an integrated approach that will ensure the patients receive the best solutions to these health issues.

According to him, Jhpiego has been at the forefront of tackling HIV/AIDS and has reached millions of Nigerian women, men, and children since 1978.

He noted that HIV testing services have been provided to more than 2.6 million people while more than 74,000 have been newly identified as HIV-positive and over 72,000, linked to care and treatment.

In his submission, the Chairman of the House Committee on AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, Godwin Amobi, insisted that Nigeria must address gender and human rights barriers as well as domestic financing to make progress in the fight against HIV/AIDS.

Amobi stated that there is still much work to be done but believes the summit is a right step in the right direction.

He encouraged the engagement between NACA and the legislature as a progress in knowing the right responses to eliminating HIV/AIDS.

He suggested that one per cent of the consolidated national funds be dedicated to managing HIV/AIDS.

“Government must take the lead by providing the needed funds. NACA must also be improved upon to become a multi-sectoral agency to fight HIV/AIDS better,” he stated.

He stated that the committee will insist that all funds must be accounted for, to ensure transparency and accountability in attaining the renewed hope agenda of President Tinubu’s administration.

Amobi, however, called for more retreats on capacity building to help the legislators attend more events to keep them abreast of best global practices while urging strict efforts against stigma and discrimination, especially in workplaces.

Participants at the retreat attended various sessions where speakers discussed the National HIV response, statistics, and the goals of the sustainability agenda.

 

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