By Peter Egwuatu
Nigeria, Kigali and other African counties are to benefit from the $18 billion support to end malaria as global change makers including David Beckham, Pierre Aubameyang, Yemi Alade, Eliud Kipchoge, and Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie came together with youth voices from across the globe to demand urgent action to end malaria.
Decision makers have the opportunity to put renewed momentum behind this fight, by building on the commitment to halve malaria across the Commonwealth by 2023, and by galvanising the record funds needed ahead of the Global Fund’s Seventh Replenishment in New York this Autumn, totaling US$18 billion to get progress back on track.
According to a statement, presented at the Summit by acclaimed Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, the petition is a rallying cry to wipe out the disease that now kills a child every minute and is the culmination of the multi-award-winning Draw. The Line creative campaign, created and executed by Dentsu who are activating mass media as a catalyst for global change.
Held on the side-lines of the 26th Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM), the Kigali Summit is a milestone moment in the malaria fight, and one where game-changing political decisions are needed to save hundreds of thousands of lives, predominantly children, under renewed threat due to the perfect storm of economic, pandemic and political pressures.
World Health Organization Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus says: “The World Health Organization welcomes a new host of scientists, youth, and champions to join the malaria fight at a crucial time when progress against the disease is lagging. Draw The Line provides a platform for Africa’s most powerful narrators to change this trajectory, disrupt political apathy, and lead the fight to end this treatable and preventable disease which kills a child nearly every minute.”
With close to three-quarters of Africans aged under 35, youth are vital and powerful agents of change. The ground-breaking Draw The Line campaign, first launched in early 2021, is the first global malaria campaign targeted at young people. Dentsu International are renewing their commitment to malaria at the Kigali Summit, unlocking $5 million worth of pro bono media support to help accelerate progress by inspiring action and commitment, and delivering an urgent appeal to leaders to improve the lives and futures of millions of people.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Chief Storyteller at the Summit, says: “Malaria has been a frequent and terrible scourge in my life and in the lives of so many people. It doesn’t have to be. Malaria is preventable and has no place in our world today, shackling the health and futures of the next generation. I ask leaders at the Kigali Summit to please be bold and make zero malaria and neglected tropical diseases their legacy.”