African ministers adopt 10-yr plan to boost health, environmental goals

African Ministers of Health Conference Jointly Convened by the African Union Commission and the World Health Organisation. Photo : AU

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (ADV) – African ministers of health and environment have adopted a 10-year strategic plan to increase investment and accelerate joint health and environment priorities on the continent.

The event took place in Libreville, Gabon on Friday.

The ministers bemoaned the fact that nearly one in four premature deaths in Africa were linked to environmental and climatic change.

They warned that the phenomenon still threatened to increase the number of health emergencies and outbreaks in the coming years.

In order to offset the threat, the recommend that African leaders to step up support for the 2008 Libreville Declaration and the 2010 Luanda Declaration which led to the creation of the Health and Environment Strategic Alliance.

“The Health and Environment Strategic Alliance in Africa represents a powerful model of multi-sectoral partnership, which is exactly what we need to achieve the sustainable development goals,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General.

A statement issued at the end of the conference, quoted the Gabonese Prime Minister Franck Emmanuel Issoze-Ngondet urging the ministers to accelerate moves in mobilizing material and financial resources for the implementation of their country plans.

The ministers agreed to strengthen policy frameworks and institutional mechanisms for more integrated interventions, as well as develop innovative platforms for funding, including more domestic resources allocated to joint actions on health and environment.

They observed that rapid and unplanned urbanization and industrialization in Africa is increasing the risk of chronic diseases such as cancer, heart disease and stroke.

The conferees appealed to the President of Gabon as host country, to present the 10-year strategic action plan for endorsement by the African Union.

© Bur-csa – A.H – N.A / From our regional correspondent Tamba Jean-Matthew III – African Daily Voice (ADV)