Toespraak van Prinses Astrid - Werelddag tegen malaria - 2012

  • 23/04/2012
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(Tekst beschikbaar alleen in het Engels)

Persbriefing - Verenigde Naties


I am very grateful to the UN Secretary-General for including malaria among his top priorities for his second mandate.

Malaria is also a top priority for me. Let me tell you why.

First of all, malaria control is one of the key Millennium Development Goals.
It affects millions of people around the globe. It devastates lives and affects communities
and their economies.

Secondly, it is therefore a global responsibility.

Because of that, thirdly, it requires the coordinated efforts and attention of decision makers at international, national and local level.

Four, the fight against malaria also benefits from a holistic approach where we combine healthcare, education, the environment and political decision making.

Five, we need strong partners : international organizations, governments, local authorities, researchers, health workers and donors from the private sector.

These are my five priorities.

Let me now share with you some of my personal experiences.

I have been Special Representative for the Roll Back Malaria Partnership for five years now. I visited countries in Africa, the Middle East and - most recently - Asia to see malaria programs and to meet with decision makers.

Last week I was in Singapore and Indonesia where I also had a contact with ASEAN.

The meetings with political leaders were very fruitful.

But I was also deeply impressed and moved by the field visits in Indonesia and the contacts with patients and health workers.

Every time I meet patients, my main message is always that malaria is preventable and treatable. But prevention and treatment require enormous efforts and funding. 

More than ever, we face two big challenges :

  • first, we need to find funding of 3.2 billion US dollars through 2015 to continue the fight in Africa, where 90 percent of malaria cases occur.
  • and second, there is growing resistance to antimalarial drugs in South-East Asia.

To overcome these challenges, we must intensify our joint and coordinated efforts.

As we celebrate World Malaria Day, let us remember that when we fight malaria,

we also tackle poverty to offer people a better life.

I truly believe that, together, we can achieve this Millennium Development Goal.