Zimbabwe President: Africa Needs Aid to Curb Noncommunicable Diseases

African countries need the international community’s support to eradicate noncommunicable diseases in the region. Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe said this during the recent U.N.-hosted meeting on non-communicable diseases, where he also urged developing countries to outline time-bound commitments to curb these diseases.

Africa’s restricted development is preventing it from adequately addressing the spread and threat of noncommunicable diseases, Mugabe said, before calling upon donors to “increase their assistance particularly to Africa towards prevention and controlling NCDs,” The Herald reports.

Mugabe further urged developed countries and international organizations to “grant flexibilities that will allow pharmaceutical companies in countries of the South to manufacture generic drugs that treat NCDs just as they did for HIV and Aids drugs in the past few years.”

But developing countries also need to do their share by making concrete commitments to train health personnel and ensure access to medicines, among similar actions, Mugabe said.

Heads of state and government and senior ministers attending the high-level meeting on noncommunicable diseases have adopted a landmark declaration to fight the diseases, which are the world’s leading killer.

Roll back malaria

Another African leader, meanwhile, is seeking accelerated international support for the campaign against malaria.

At an event marking 10 years of the Roll Back Malaria partnership, Equatorial Guinea President Obiang Nguema Mbasogo urged government, non-governmental organizations and the private sector to renew their commitments to the global effort against the disease.

“We can drastically change the lives of those affected by malaria by working together in strategic associations with the private and public sector,” the president said at the event, which was held on the sidelines of the 66th U.N. General Assembly in New York. “Country leaders need to make malaria a national health priority to establish the necessary programs and tools to fight and control malaria.”

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About the author

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    Ivy Mungcal

    As former senior staff writer, Ivy Mungcal contributed to several Devex publications. Her focus is on breaking news, and in particular on global aid reform and trends in the United States, Europe, the Caribbean, and the Americas. Before joining Devex in 2009, Ivy produced specialized content for U.S. and U.K.-based business websites.