Dear RBM Partners,
Today marks three weeks since I joined the RBM Partnership to End Malaria. I come on board at a critical time: just six months ahead of the sixth replenishment conference of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, and at a pivotal moment in our global efforts against malaria.
World Malaria Day we marked just a few days ago in Paris and around the world underscored the urgent need for each of us to step up the fight to achieve a “zero malaria” world.
Today, more countries than ever before are closer to elimination; yet for two years now, new malaria cases are on the rise in the highest burden countries. Half of the 10 highest malaria burdened countries in Africa and the world are Francophone. Together, they account for one-quarter of the global malaria burden.
By holding the main World Malaria Day event in Paris, with support from the French government and the City of Paris, the RBM Partnership sought to highlight the efforts of Francophone countries in reducing the malaria burden, as well as urging more global action to meet the $14 billion target for the Global Fund replenishment which will be hosted by France in October. To achieve this, we need all countries—both malaria-affected and malaria-free—to step up their commitment and investment.
On World Malaria Day, leaders from all walks of life reaffirmed their commitment to our shared vision of a malaria-free world, with events in London marking a year since the Commonwealth leaders agreed to halve malaria burden by 2023, in Bangkok where 24 Asia-Pacific nations pledged to accelerate progress to end malaria in the region for good, and Francophone mayors signing a declaration to integrate malaria efforts in urban development strategies.
In line with the Day’s theme of “Zero Malaria Starts with Me”, two countries—Ghana and Sierra Leone—announced their national campaigns in support of this growing pan-African movement. We also welcomed the formal launch of the new Civil Society for Malaria Elimination (CS4ME), a coalition of civil society organisations and communities affected by malaria to advocate for more effective, sustainable and people-centred malaria programmes.
For me, World Malaria Day events were a perfect illustration of the spirit of partnership that is at the heart of everything we do. It was wonderful to see so many partners—old and new—coming together in Paris, London, Bangkok and elsewhere around the world, and seeing how we can promote cooperation and leverage the know-how of various partners in support of our collective objectives.
On behalf of the RBM Partnership, I wish to say a big thank you to all our Partners for your unwavering commitment and support. I look forward to hearing from you and engaging with many of you in the coming weeks, with the next opportunity being the 72nd World Health Assembly in Geneva later this month.
With best wishes,
Dr Abdourahmane Diallo
RBM Partnership to End Malaria