Excellencies Heads of State and Government, Honourable African Ministers of Health, African communities and Partners,
The Governing Board is the deliberative organ of the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC). The Governing Board members extend their sincere appreciation to the African Ministers who entrusted them with the responsibility to serve and represent the continent with the utmost dedication, commitment and passion.
The Governing Board held an extraordinary meeting on the 13th Sep 2023 to elect the new members of the Bureau and discuss on important strategic matters related to Africa CDC.
The Governing Board congratulates the Ministers of Health of Zambia and Ethiopia for their election as the Chairperson and Vice Chairperson of the Governing Board.
The Governing Board expresses its heartfelt condolences to the Governments of Morocco and Libya, and to the families of those who have lost their lives due to natural disasters. The Governing Board requests Africa CDC to engage with the authorities of the 2 countries to provide needed assistance to our brothers and sisters who are affected there.
The Governing Board acknowledges the pivotal role of Africa CDC in leading the continental response to various health crises. It is worth noting that the Heads of State and Government elevated Africa CDC to the status of an autonomous entity within the African Union to strengthen and empower this institution further.
The Governing Board commends H.E Dr. Jean Kaseya, the Director-General of Africa CDC, for his exceptional leadership and strategic partnership skills in guiding this vital institution. It is worth noting that in his first hundred days at the helm, H.E Dr. Kaseya and his team have demonstrated unwavering dedication and a visionary approach, leading Africa CDC to several notable accomplishments. Some of the key achievements include:
- Approval and launch of the Africa CDC Strategic plan 2023 to 2027, outlining a clear roadmap to address the continent’s health challenges, strengthen public health systems, and ensure a coordinated response to emerging threats;
- Formation and inauguration of the new Africa CDC Advisory and Technical Council;
- Formation and inauguration of the new Governing Board for Africa CDC;
- Approval of the new Africa CDC structure (organogram) that will significantly enhance governance issues whilst promoting efficiency, effectiveness, and responsiveness.
- Strategic reorientation of the Saving Lives and Livelihoods initiative in partnership with the Mastercard Foundation, focusing on the vaccination of high-risk populations, integration of COVID-19 response into routine immunization, and proactive preparation for potential future pandemics on the continent.
- Strengthened partnership with Gavi through the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to support the immunization agenda in Africa, along with advocacy efforts for strengthening local manufacturing on the continent.
- Leadership in Pandemic Preparedness, Prevention, and Response (PPPR) in Africa by strengthening partnerships with WHO and partners, launching the Joint Action Plan with WHO AFRO and EMRO, advocating for local manufacturing of health commodities, and supporting the decision of Heads of State per the new Statute approved in 2022 for Africa CDC to declare Public Health Emergencies of Continental Concern.
- Support African Member States in the negotiation of the Pandemic treaty and the new International Health Regulations, including the articulation of a Common Africa Position on PPPR as deliberated by the Specialized Technical Committee on Health.
- Launching of the new vision for Community Health Workers in Africa through support for the Community Health Delivery Partnership.
- Championing innovative financing for health and taking concrete steps towards the operationalization of the financial sustainability plan of Africa CDC, including the finalization and submission of governance and operational arrangements for the African Epidemics Fund to the African Union Policy Organs.
- Engaging actively with Heads of State and Government, Ministers and Partners that has resulted in concrete outcomes, such as H.E. President Ruto’s allocation of 10 hectares of land in Nairobi and $2 million USD for the construction of Africa CDC’s Eastern Regional Coordinating Center (RCC). These high-level engagements have fostered a sense of unity and shared responsibility among African leaders in tackling health issues.
The Governing Board further resolved to transform the mandate of H.E. President Ramaphosa (South Africa) from CoVID Champion to PPPR Champion. In this regard, the Governing Board calls the Committee of Heads of State and Government (CHSG) as the highest governing structure of Africa CDC to deliberate on this matter and submit it for endorsement by the African Union Summit in February 2024.
The Governing Board recognises the potential risk of future pandemics and learning from the CoVID-19 pandemic, reaffirms its commitment to ensuring equitable access to vaccines, therapeutics, diagnostics, and consumables for all African citizens and is calling upon the international community to support Africa CDC’s efforts in this regard.
In conclusion, the Governing Board extends its heartfelt gratitude to the AU Commission, and all our partners, both within and outside the African Union, for their unwavering support in our collective fight against health challenges. We eagerly anticipate continued collaboration and solidarity as we work together to build a healthier and more resilient Africa.