The country’s Health Minister, Professor C.O. Onyebuchi Chukwu has announced the contribution of $10 million at the recently concluded Global Fund Third Voluntary Replenishment had.
Only two other countries in Africa made pledges; South Africa-$2.1 and Tunisia-$2.0. In addition, a Nigerian bank led some private sector organizations under the umbrella of a body known as Gift from Africa to make a donation of $1million.
Announcing Nigeria’s pledge, Prof. Chukwu stated that “The Third Global Fund Replenishment is an opportunity for the government to restate its commitment to the health and well-being of its citizens in furtherance of Nigeria’s endorsement and commitment in support of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon’s new initiative-the Global Strategy for Women’s and Children’s Health”.
Of the projected $13 billion that was announced ahead of the Third Voluntary Replenishment (2011-2013) Pledging Conference, pledges totaling US$11.68 billion were made by donor governments, private donors and religious bodies amongst others.
The Global Fund is the world’s largest multilateral financing organization for health. According to UNAIDS, it provides 25% of all international financing for AIDS globally, two-thirds for tuberculosis and 75% for malaria.
Since the Fund came into existence in 2002, US$1.48 has been approved for Nigeria to access however only US$500 of that amount has been accessed due to a variety of reasons.
Some of these reasons are time lags in accepting proposals, due diligence before the release of funds, delays by principal recipients (government agencies and Non-Governmental agencies) in reporting implementation-the Fund being performance-based as well as the time required to audit performance reports by the Global Fund.
Apart from the pledging, an update on the Global Fund’s financial resources was presented to delegates in an effort to encourage transparency, effectiveness, accountability and inclusiveness.
The Fund’s Deputy Executive Director, Dr. Debrework Zewdie also made a presentation titled “An agenda for a more efficient and effective Global Fund.”