Staff Reporter Windhoek-President Hage Geingob this week met United Kingdom’s Prince William, the Duke of Cambridge, on the sidelines of the Commonwealth Summit in London, to discuss issues of climate change, conservation and opportunities in Namibia’ tourism industry. The meeting was at the invitation of the Duke of Cambridge, who also informed Geingob of his intentions to visit Namibia in the near future. “The discussion, occurring on the margins of the Commonwealth Summit focused on the role of education in transforming communities and creating sustainable societies, the value and future of the Commonwealth, including what leaders could do to make the body work better for member states,” Dr Alfredo Hengari, Geingob’s press secretary, said in a statement issued yesterday. Hengari said Geingob described the talks as “constructive and positive for the future of Namibia-UK bilateral cooperation”. Geingob also had the opportunity to join, as host nation of the Malaria Elimination 8 group, other world leaders at the Malaria Summit London, which convened under the theme “Ready to Beat Malaria”. It was here that Geingob informed the world leaders present that over the past five years Namibia spent about N$119.6 million in combating malaria. He said upon attaining independence, Namibia’s surveillance system reported close to 500,000 cases of malaria, 40,000 admissions and 1,700 deaths due to the disease. “Staying true to our commitment to invest in the health of our people, we have managed, over the course of 28 years, to reduce malaria cases by almost 90 percent, thanks in part to our budgetary commitments towards combating malaria, totalling US$10 million (N$119.6 million) over the past five years,” Geingob noted. The Malaria Elimination 8 group comprises of Angola, Namibia, Botswana, South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Swaziland and Mozambique. “We hope to leverage these platforms to further strengthen our regional and continental efforts towards combating malaria. We are weary of the fact that progress in the fight against malaria has stagnated in many regions of the world. It is for this reason that we are here at this Summit, to exchange ideas with peers and experts, as well as to express our resolute commitment towards ending malaria by 2023,” Geingob said. Geingob said Namibia welcomes the findings and recommendations of the Malaria Future for Africa (MalaFA) Study, which was launched in London this week. He thanked the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for the extraordinary work they are doing in the fight against malaria. Geingob also took part in the formal opening at Buckingham Palace UK’s Queen Elizabeth, and the official welcoming ceremony hosted by Theresa May, the UK Prime Minister, and Patricia Scotland QC, the Secretary General of the Commonwealth. President Geingob also participated in the Executive Session at Lancaster House where discussions focused on the Secretary General’s Biennial Report, a presentation of the Commonwealth Small States Ministerial Meeting and the Report of the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group.
2018-04-20 09:14:28 4 months ago