ONE of the effective strategies in preventing GBV is to stop wars ,First Lady Dr Christine Kaseba has said.
Addressing the World Health Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland on May 20,2014, Dr Kaseba said, “ In most of the conflicts across the region and the world over, the majority of the casualties are women and children who have no capacity to defend themselves.”
Dr Kaseba Said, “ We need to be in the forefront to promote peace and prevent the unnecessary suffering of women and children.”
The First Lady urged the World Health Organisation to develop, with member states, and in Collaboration with UN, relevant International Organisation and other stakeholders, a global plan of action to strengthen the role of health system in a multi sectoral response to address all forms of Interpersonal violence, building on existing relevant WHO work and resolution that the Assembly had passed complemented efforts by other organization.
“ We have got to prevent Gender Based Violence. There is no “them” only us, to push this Agenda forward.” Dr Kaseba Said. “ I therefore call upon all of us present today to fight against GBV during our life time. One Case of GBV is one case many.”
At the same occasion, Melida Gates Said, ” Global health is my second career. I wasn’t formally trained in the field, but I have spent the past 15 years learning about it from experts, including many of you. I have travelled to dozens of countries to see for myself how the right investments can help people tap into potential that has been buried under the burden of poverty and disease.”
She said, ” One thing I’ve learned during my apprenticeship in global health is how complex and how critical your work is, both as part of this assembly and in your ministries. Here, you debate what is possible, and encourage the world to see what we can accomplish together. Back home, you do the challenging day-to-day work of turning big plans into results.
Simply put, you have proved that your bold ambition is justified. The world is getting healthier—faster—than ever before. To me, the best measure of success is declining child mortality. When you think about global health as a choice between saving more children or letting more children die, the stakes are very clear.”
Melinda said the world’s record on child mortality is strong. Since 1990, the baseline year for the Millennium Development Goals, the number of children dying has gone down by 47 percent. This improvement is even more impressive if you account for population growth. If the rate of death had remained constant since 1990, then 17 million children would have died last year. Instead, the number was 6.6 million.
She said that progress is stunning. And yet the fact that 6.6 million children still die—almost all of whom could have been saved—is just as stunning. It’s also an urgent call to action. Getting that number down as close to zero as possible is a cornerstone of your work.
Melinda also said,” My husband Bill has had the honor to address this assembly on two occasions. In 2005, when our foundation was still very young, he explained who we are, why we were getting involved in global health, and how we think about solving problems.
He told the story of the newspaper article we read about rotavirus, which kills hundreds of thousands of children in poor countries but almost none in rich countries.
We were shocked by this glaring inequity, but we were also inspired by the world’s ability to address it. Innovations like oral rehydration therapy and rotavirus vaccines are making it possible to save those lives—and to live out the principle that all lives have equal value.” -PICTURES BY THOMAS NSAMA