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Fast track Malaria Trust Fund – Speaker

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The Speaker of Uganda’s Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga, has urged the Parliamentary Forum on Malaria to fast track the formation of the Malaria Trust Fund (MTF) to enable the government make its monetary contribution.

Kadaga made the remarks at the launch of the “Malaria ends with me campaign” at Parliament on Tuesday, 27 April 2021. She regretted that COVID-19 had boxed the fight against malaria into a corner.

“The Coronavirus has had a lot of impact on the population. The mosquitoes did not go into lockdown and they continue to ravage the population. In Namasagali, one cannot even sit down during the day because the whole body will be ravaged by mosquitoes. If we spray the houses, the citizens can go back to living their normal lives,” she said. 

She advised the citizens to protect their loved ones from malaria by keeping clean homes, clearing bushes and stagnated water around their homes and sleeping under insecticide treated mosquito nets. 

The Chairperson of the Parliamentary Forum for Malaria and also Bugabula County South Member of Parliament, Hon. Henry Maurice Kibalya, said that the Bill had been earlier brought to the Floor of the House as a Private Members Bill, by Hon. Paul Mwiru (FDC, Jinja Municipality) but is still devoid of a certificate of financial implication.

“When the forum was being launched at Parliament, the President, H.E Yoweri Museveni, pledged to have a MTF, the issue of the certificate of financial implication was stayed by the Minister of Health making it hard to see the money injected into it. I believe we need to bring it back on the Floor,” he said.

The external partners, Kibalya said, were the major funders of the chasing malaria initiative. “Our partners came to interface with you as the Speaker of Parliament, so that you can help them forward their issues as increased domestic funding. The Department for International Development (DFID) has decided to leave Uganda and yet they have been the biggest partners in the malaria fight,” he added.

Dr Jimmy Opigo, the Ministry of Health representative, said that the withdrawal of funds for the fight agonist malaria by DFID two months ago was a big blow to the Ministry and the country at large  

Mr Kenneth Mugisha, the Board Chairman, Malaria Free Uganda, said that, the Board was waiting on the Solicitor General to clear the Malaria Fund mobilisation, so that they start a drive for contributions for malaria control in the country. 

“It would be prudent if the Members of Parliament contributed a certain fee towards this Fund as we wait for government funding to be approved,” Mugisha beseeched.

A well-wisher checking out his blood pressure prior to donating blood at the mini-health camp

The Speaker later on launched a mini-health camp where well-wishers donated blood, tested for malaria, sickle cell anemia and prostate cancer among other diseases. 

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