24 February 2023
Malaria Free Uganda initiative has boosted the government’s fight against malaria with a donation of UGX 80 million (approximately USD 21 000) to the Ministry of Health. A bulk of these funds were raised during the “Malaria Family Carnival” held in conjunction with Rotary Club last December. Ecobank matched the kitty with an additional donation from its Zero Malaria Business Leadership (ZMBLI) bringing its total contribution so far to UGX 160 million (approximately USD 43 000).
Malaria Free Uganda (MFU) is a board of top business leaders of various organisations operating in Uganda. It also supports the government in testing, treatment, and vector control. The board was established [year] to mobilize resources from the private sector for the fight against malaria. Uganda shoulders one of the highest burdens of malaria worldwide with the eighth highest number of deaths and third highest number of deaths in the world. According to the World Health Organisation, approximately 20,000 people in Uganda die from the disease each year. Despite efforts to combat malaria, the disease continues to pose a significant threat to the health and the well-being of many Ugandans.
Other companies that contributed to the Carnival fundraising include: Malaria Partners, Uganda Joint Medical Stores, Pilgrim Africa, Uganda Electricity Generation Company Limited, Centenary Bank, Uganda Bureau of Statistics, Prossy Nabanjja, Adena Travel Agency, Kalikumutima & Co Advocates, Guaranty Trust Bank, Uganda National Oil Company, Pride Bank Uganda, Law Society, Rotary Club Kiwatule, Mobicast Media, Digital Visual Interface, Forever Media, Balaam Marketing Agency, Galaxy FM, National Medical Stores, Prime media, Kenya Airways and Geepas Uganda.
Ecobank Uganda joined the fight against malaria in 2022 with a USD 120,000 matching fund, which was launched in March 2022, to support the continuing efforts of Malaria Free Uganda to mobilize private sector companies in the fight against malaria in Uganda. This matching fund is to be used to match up any private sector contributions for malaria as a way of encouraging other private sector companies to join the fight against this deadly disease.
While handing over the funds, the Board Chair of Free Malaria Uganda Mr. Ken Mugisha said:
« We are grateful to all the individuals and partners that have contributed to this fund. We understand that for the children and those in need, the difference between life and death can be as little as one dollar. It is therefore our responsibility as the private sector to support the government to protect the lives of Ugandans. »
« The number of man hours or even worse lives lost due to this scourge has a huge impact on the economy and is costly to both companies and individuals especially when you consider the medical costs associated with treatment of the disease. Malaria Free Uganda is committed to ending malaria within a generation. We believe that by working together with partners like Ecobank Uganda, we can achieve this goal and create a future where no one dies from such a preventable disease. »
On her part, the Managing Director of Ecobank Uganda Grace Muliisa reiterated the bank’s commitment to the wellbeing of Ugandans.
« Malaria remains a major health challenge for Uganda and many African countrues. At Ecobank, we believe that it is our responsibility to support initiatives that promote health and well-being in the communities where we operate. This is underpinned by the Health pilar of our Ecobank Foundation and we are proud to be part of the distinguished Malaria Free Uganda that is working to help combat this preventable disease. »
« This partnership between Ecobank Uganda and Malaria Free Uganda is an important step in the fight against malaria,” said Hon. Dr. Jane ruth Aceng, the Minister of Health, Uganda. “By working together, these organizations can make a real difference in the lives of Ugandans and help to build a healthier and more prosperous future for our country. »
This event aims to encourage more private sector companies to join the fight to help achieving a malaria-free Uganda.