Global TB Caucus Members around the World Call for Political Actions against TB on World TB Day
On 24 March, the world has commemorated the World TB Day 2019 with a theme, “It’s Time to End TB”. This World TB Day has been a particularly important one, as it marked six months since the UN High-Level Meeting (HLM) on TB. The UN HLM on TB, held in September 2018, resulted in a Political Declaration on TB endorsed by Heads of States that outlines epidemiological targets for the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of the disease. Now the crucial task remaining is to ensure that the targets agreed are delivered and to monitor the implementation of the Declaration in countries. This year’s World TB Day, therefore, provided us with an opportunity to evaluate our progress against commitments made during the HLM and to press for greater accountability.
“Parliamentarians have the fundamental role of holding governments into account, making sure that the government makes the effort it promised to do. The members of the Global TB Caucus are committed to continue working to ensure that the declaration is translated into action and that the commitments don’t stay only on paper”, says Rt Hon Nick Herbert, member of parliament (MP) of the UK and co-chair of the Global TB Caucus. As members of the Global TB Caucus, parliamentarians around the world have participated in events, meetings, and campaigns to mark this World TB Day, and called for accountable political actions towards ending TB. Below are some of the highlights from each region.
Hon Ruth Labode, MP of Zimbabwe, made a public statement at a national TB event that presses for the mobilisation of political leaders to end TB. Find more information here.
Hon Stephen Mule, MP of Kenya, participated in a national World TB Day celebration where he reaffirmed the commitments to end TB by 2030 and introduced an End TB initiative in the country. Photos from the event can be found here.
Hon Chris Kalila, MP of Zambia, participated in a “KICK TB OUT” event during the World TB Day celebration, which was organised through a joint effort among the Government, civil society organisations, WHO, MPs, and communities including former TB patients.
Hon Mark Botomani, MP of Malawi, attended a national World TB Day celebration event presided over by the Secretary for Health and Population. Photos from the event can be found here. Photos from the event can be found here.
The Zimbabwe TB Caucus led by Hon Ruth Labode participated in a World TB Day event celebrated with civil society focal point Jointed Hands. Participants amplified the voices of the TB affected community to enhance their contribution to the END TB Strategy as they reaffirm their commitment to work in partnership with the Ministry of Health, partners, and communities to end TB. Find out more here.
Hon Elma Dienda participated in a World TB Day celebration in Namibia, where she gave a speech at the ceremony, pledging to end TB by 2030. Photos from the event can be found here.
World TB Day event was held in Uganda graced by the presence of Hon Joyce Moriku Kaducu, Minister for State for Health in charge of Primary Health Care, Hon Joel Ssebekaali, Chair of the Uganda TB Caucus, and other development partners. Photos from the event can be found here.
Hon Gisela Scaglia, MP of Argentina, organised a World TB Day mobilisation campaign in the National Congress and used social media to spread the word.
Hon Luz Salgado, MP of Peru and Co-chair of Americas TB Caucus, organised a special hearing around the World TB Day with MPs, media and civil society representatives. Find out more here.
Hon Antonio Brito, MP of Brazil, gave an interview at a national radio channel about TB in celebration of the Word TB Day, calling for efforts to fight the disease.
Hon Juan Castro, MP of Chile, has used his social media platforms to raise awareness of the World TB Day and the UN HLM targets.
Hon Claudio Marte, Member of Parlacen Regional Parliament, engaged with several media channels to raise awareness of the need to fully fund TB in Central America and in the Dominican Republic. Find more information here and here.
Hon Helen Tan, MP of the Philippines, participated in a national World TB Day event where representatives from different Ministries presented their commitments on fighting TB in their areas of work. More information can be found here.
On World TB Day, Federal Minister for National Health Services of Pakistan, Aamir Mehmood Kiani, publicly stated that an integrated strategy was being formulated by the federal government to eliminate TB across the country. Find out more here.
Hon San Shway Wynn from Myanmar was part of a World TB Day event that was attended by Ministers from across departments, and where the Minister of Health Dr Myint Htwe gave an inaugural address. Governments and health departments joined together to commemorate WTBD in 15 regions.
In Vietnam, Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam spoke at a World TB Day event organised by the National TB Program. He emphasised that financial mechanisms and application of new technology and treatment should be encouraged. More here.
Europe and Central Asia
Hon Nick Herbert, MP and the co-chairman of the GTBC, called for a debate on TB in the House of Commons, marking the World TB Day. Hon Herbert emphasised the salience of the issue and the importance of the successful replenishment of the Global Fund. Find his speech here.
Hon Nick Herbert and Mr Virendra Sharma hosted an All-Party Parliamentary Group on Global TB event attended by Minister of State for International Development Hon Alistair Burt among others. Speakers highlighted the importance of the Global Fund and urged for increased funding towards the diseases in line with the HLM targets.
Ukraine held a parliamentary hearing on “Ways to defeat TB in Ukraine” as per the suggestion from Hon Serhii Kiral, the Chairman of the Parliamentary Platform on TB Control. Also, a public action "It’s Time" took place in front of the Verkhovna Rada building, to celebrate the World TB Day.
Hon Malahat Ibrahimziqi held a public hearing at the Azerbaijani Parliament, gathering MPs, civil society members, representatives of the Ministry of Health and the World Health Organization. Find out more here.