The Malawi Network of Aids Services Organisations (Manaso) has said time has come for Malawi to make tough decisions so that it ends HIV and Aids by 2030 or ensure the pandemic is no longer a public threat.
Manaso says while 82 percent of current Aids interventions are possible due to donor resources, the country must look beyond the donor funds so that sustainability is attained for the sake of the future where donors are likely to be no longer there.
Speaking at Mponela in Dowa, during a meeting organised by the Southern African Development Community Parliamentary Forum (Sadc PF) on how civil society and religious organisations can participate in strengthening HIV and Aids interventions, Manaso Board Chairperson, Maziko Matemba, said donors cannot sustain any programme.
The meeting was officially opened by Speaker of Parliament Richard Msowoya.
Said Matemba: “We are happy that we have the resources but if anything happens, we must know how we are going to support the people who are on treatment because sustainability only comes when a country is able to fund its own programmes.
“We are not saying donors are doing a bad thing but, globally, there is a movement now where they are encouraging domestic resource mobilisation. But as a country, we are making improvements in allocating resources towards HIV and Aids interventions.”
On the other hand, Matemba said the improvements are slow.
According to the Manaso chairperson, even the Global Fund is encouraging countries to start mobilising local resources for HIV and Aids interventions.
“Some of the tough actions we must undertake include efficient use of resources and additional budget allocation to the health sector. We can also expound more on the insurance aspect and levies that can be put into HIV resources,” said Matemba.
On his part, Msowoya said the involvement of CSOs in mobilisation of local resources for HIV interventions is important because most of the organisations are close to the communities and interact with them almost on a daily basis.
He said, in such light, the CSOs would be in a better position to know the magnitude of the HIV problem and engage in lobbying for adequate funding for relevant interventions.
“It is also a continuous responsibility to ensure that the CSOs, government depar tments and even Par l iamen t engage in continuous monitoring, evaluation and even auditing in terms of the resources,” said Msowoya.
The CSOs-Sadc PF meeting came after the parliamentary body had funded another meeting targeting Members of Parliament from different committees including those of budget and gender.
A vibrant writer who gives a great insight on hot topics and issues