Faith-based organisations should join fight against malaria: Pato

11 Nov 2018 15:10pm
SHAMBYU, 11 NOV (NAMPA) – Faith-based organisations should join the fight against malaria as Namibia needs foot soldiers in the fight against the disease, the Bishop of the Anglican Diocese of Namibia, Lungile Pato has said.
Pato made the call during the commemoration of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) 2018 Malaria Awareness Day at Shambyu on Friday.
The event was held under the theme ‘Strong cross-border collaboration is key to malaria elimination.’
“The Anglican Diocese of Namibia has been involved in the fight against malaria for many years. When the initiative for cross-border malaria was signed between Namibia and Angola, the Anglican Diocese was a partner in the agreement,” Pato said.
The bishop said the church believes malaria can be eliminated and lives can be saved.
“In order for this to be achieved, continued collaboration is key,” Pato stated.
He called on faith-based organisations to take the fight against malaria to every community as they have foot soldiers in the most remote and most inaccessible areas.
The bishop said last Monday, the church distributed close to 26 000 malaria nets to various communities in the Ohangwena and Omusati regions.
They also visited the State hospital in Engela in the Ohangwena Region, where they were told that 88 per cent of malaria cases in the hospital were from Angola.
“This for us affirmed the wisdom of the decision by the governments of Namibia and Angola to collaborate in the fight against the disease,” he stated.
The event was attended by Minister of Health and Social Services Bernard Haufiku, Malaria Elimination 8 (E8) Ambassador, Richard Kamwi and WHO Country Representative, Charles Sagoe-Moses, as well as ministers from Angola, Botswana, Malawi and Tanzania.
The E8 refers to eight southern African countries with the highest malaria transmission and deaths. They are Angola, Botswana, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Mozambique, Zambia and Zimbabwe.