Public Statement from Members of the Sierra Leone Parliament

Statement • 10 November 2020

We, as Honourable Members of the Parliament of Sierra Leone, are gathered in Freetown to participate in the Parliamentary Engagement Forum as part of the Zero Malaria Starts with Me campaign, are united in our collective commitment to end malaria, one of the oldest and deadliest diseases, which threatens all 7.65 million citizens of Sierra Leone and many hundreds of millions across Africa.

As parliamentarians, we have an important role to play in controlling and eliminating malaria. First and foremost, we have a responsibility to our citizens to provide them with the access to services and information needed to protect themselves and seek diagnosis and treatment when necessary. We collectively condemn the continuation of malaria in our society, which is an entirely preventable and treatable disease that in 2018 alone killed at least 1,494 people and caused 1,781,855 cases in Sierra Leone.

At the national level, it is our duty to advocate for policies and budgets that provide adequately for the health needs of all Sierra Leoneans. To this end, we support the following goals:

  1. Increase of the health budget from 11% to 15% of total spending, in alignment with the Abuja Declaration, to which Sierra Leone is a signatory.
  2. Increase of the budget line for malaria, HIV and TB from 0.2% of total budget (1.9% of health budget) to 0.4% of total budget (3.8% of health budget). 
  3. Establishment of a high-level, multi-sectoral End Malaria Council/Fund to help drive domestic resource mobilization.

Furthermore, at the sub-national level, it is our duty to work with local authorities and other stakeholders in order to support and encourage all initiatives aiming to reduce the burden of malaria in our communities.

In the spirit of cooperation, we, as an Honourable Members of the Sierra Leone Parliament, therefore pledge to support the sub-national, national and international efforts towards a malaria-free country and continent as part of the “Zero Malaria Starts with Me” campaign led by the RBM Partnership to End Malaria and the African Union.

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