Africa steps up fight against malaria

08:31, May 06, 2010      

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President Jakaya Kikwete (C) of Tanzania, member country of the African Leaders Malaria Alliance (ALMA), speaks during a news conference prior to the World Economic Forum on Africa in Dar es Salaam, capital of Tanzania, May 5, 2010. Kikwete said that the 26-member group ALMA will focus on ensuring the availability of three main anti-malaria interventions, namely Artemisinin-based Combinations Therapies (ACTs), long-lasting insecticide-treated nets (LLINs) and indoor residual sprays. Currently, 200 million LLINs are in place, covering half of the at-risk population in Africa, ALMA said, adding that some 150 million additional nets will be produced and delivered by the end of this year. (Xinhua/Xu Suhui)

2010 is the last year of the United Nations' "Decade to Roll Back Malaria." The topic has topped the agenda of this year's World Economic Forum on Africa, with African leaders, the business sector and international organizations reaffirming their commitment to eliminating the disease from the continent.

Last year, the African Leaders Malaria Alliance (ALMA) was launched to provide African leaders with a high-level forum to promote universal coverage of effective malaria interventions.

President Jakaya Kikwete of Tanzania, member country of the alliance, said at the sidelines of the forum that the 26-member group will focus on ensuring the availability of three main anti- malaria interventions, namely Artemisinin-based Combinations Therapies (ACTs), long-lasting insecticide-treated nets (LLINs) and indoor residual sprays.

ALMA announced on the same day that Africa will receive new funding from external donors to fight against malaria, No.1 killer of children under five on the continent.

The new financial commitments will include funding from the United States President's Malaria Initiative (PMI), ALMA said.

According to Tim Ziemer of the PMI, U.S. President Barack Obama has requested a budget of 680 million U.S. dollars for malaria in 2011, 100 million dollars of which will be used for the purchase of lifesaving malaria prevention and treatment measures in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Nigeria, two countries that together account for nearly half of the world's malaria cases.

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(Editor:intern1)

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