President Muhammadu Buhari said on Friday in New York said Nigeria would continue to work with development partners to strengthen the mechanisms for the implemention the newly launched Sustanable Development Goals(SDGs).
He gave the assurance at an event organised by UN-AIDS titled:
Strengthening the Means of Implementation of the SDGs and Ensuring an AIDS-free Generation by 2030 Through the Elimination of Mother to Child Transmission of HIV: A Dual Imperative for Nigeria.
He said Nigeria remained fully committed to all declarations and committments made at both continental and international levels towards the elimination of killer diseases and improved healthcare for the citizenry.
He said such initiatives included the Action Framework on Roll – Back Malaria and the 2013 Abuja + 12 Declaration on the elimination of HIV and AIDs in Africa by 2030.
The President said that Nigeria would continue to welcome the support of development partners and their commitment to the total eradication of HIV and AIDs, Tuberculosis and Malaria as well as other deadly communicable diseases, such as ebola.
He called on them to also continue to sustain the fight against infant and maternal deaths, HIV and AIDs, Tuberculosis, Malaria and other communicable diseases.
“We are on the threshold of history as world leaders adopt the successor development agenda to the Millennium Development Goals.
“For over 30 years, HIV as a public health challenge has been causing havoc and untold hardship in virtually every part of the world.
“To date, several million children have been orphaned and some communities have been devastated, while economic activities have been disrupted.
“Unfortunately, Sub -Saharan Africa bears a disproportionate burden of this epidemic,” he said.
Buhari said the good news was that the effort of the global community had resulted in greater control, less spread and better management of the disease.
He said, Nigeria had made significant progress towards the interception of mother to child transmission of HIV.
In 2014 alone, he said, three million pregnant women were tested for HIV and presently 63,000 women, who tested positive to the virus, were having access to free anti-retroviral therapy.
“What is required in our continued fight against HIV/AIDS is improved health delivery system, education, and cheaper production of anti – retroviral drugs through technology exchange.
“Our countries should also look at the whole field of medicare and strengthen our partnership with all stakeholders including the civil society and inter- faith and cultural bodies for education and dissemination of information at all levels.
“Nigeria will also like to call upon all pharmaceutical companies for more cooperation and understanding in reducing the cost of anti – retroviral drugs through production of generic items,” he said.
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