By Amaka Agwuegbo
Friends Africa, in partnership with Access Bank, has continued their support for development of workplace policies in HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria as the touring and free workshop titled â€œWorkplace Policies Development Workshop in AIDS, TB and Malariaâ€ meant for business managers moves to Enugu between March 11 and 12.
The workshop, which is also supported by National Agency for Control of AIDS (NACA), Nigerian Business Coalition Against AIDS (NIBUCAA) and Global Business Coalition (GBC) is geared at educating 250 small to medium-scale enterprises (SMEs) on implementing policies in AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.
The Enugu workshop will hold at the Nike Lake Resort, and is the second in a series of nationwide workshops following one held in Lagos.
The event will feature sessions from distinguished persons in the public health and business fields which include:Â Prof. John Idoko, Director General of National Agency for Control of AIDS (NACA) and Olusina Olulana, Executive Secretary/CEO, Nigerian Business Coalition Against AIDS (NIBUCAA).
According to Dr. Akudo Ikemba, CEO/Founder of Friends Africa â€œdignitaries such as Mr. Onyebuchi Chidi â€“ Deputy Governor of Enugu State, Dr. Godwin Abonyi â€“ Special Adviser to the Enugu State Governor on Community & Environmental Health, Hon. David Atigwe, Chairman, House Committee on Health and Dr. Uche Uzochukwu, Enugu State Commissioner for Health will also be in attendance.
â€œIt is an opportunity for members of the private sector in our community to truly take ownership of the fight against these three deadly diseases, by coming together to learn strategies for control, prevention and care in the workplace.â€
According to a study done by World Economic Forum (WEF) on Business Response to AIDS, TB and malaria, 53% of the 153 surveyed Nigerian private sector firms said that HIV/AIDS was affecting their current business operations, 88% said that they expect HIV/AIDS to impact their business operations in the next five years, 58% said that they expect malaria to impact their business operations in the next five years and 67% said they expected TB to impact their business operation in the next five years.
Access Bank sees a need for reforms in workplace health policies hence the provision of funds for this workshop partnership with Friends Africa, which is a Pan-African organization that works primarily to mobilize strategic political and financial support for the fight against AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria through capacity building/education, multi-sector advocacy, documentation and technical assistance.