South Africa fails to accept $41 million from Global Fund

Richard Feachem, executive director of the UN-administered Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, says he is disappointed the South African government had not signed a deal to accept millions of dollars to combat the HIV pandemic.

In April, Feachem visited South Africa to sign an agreement for the release of US$41 million – the first installment of US$165 million to be released over five years – to fund programmes combating AIDS. But the South African government has repeatedly delayed signing the deal, citing “complex legal procedures,” according to the South African Press Association.

“I have no words to express my dismay. It seems that the health ministry or whoever is responsible for this are fiddling while Rome is burning. People are dying,” said Anglican Archbishop Njongonkulu Ndungane. South Africa’s health department said in a statement that the deal “will, without fail, be signed” in May. “Programme implementation will begin by the end of May.” The fund reached the deal with South Africa’s government more than a year ago.

Source: CDC summaries

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