The Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire has said the Nigerian Government would need N1.89 trillion to reduce the prevalence of malaria to less than 10 percent as well as cut mortality to less than 50 deaths per 1,000 live births by 2025.
The Minister made this remark in a swift reaction to the unenviable record that Nigeria alone contributes 27 percent of the global malaria cases and 23 percent of global malaria deaths.
Ehanire was speaking at an event to commemorate the 2021 World Malaria Day..
While he rues the prevailing economic circumstances as threats to realizing the billion required for the implementation of the strategic plan for the malaria programme this year, he, however, solicits the support of the private sector, corporate organisations, and patriotic individuals in this regard.
Meanwhile, the World Health Organisation (WHO) Country Representative, Walter Kazadi-Mulombo, has identified malaria as a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in Nigeria, adding that with all Nigerians at risk, it accounts for more than 60% of hospital visits, 20% of under-five mortality and 11% of maternal mortality.
He said it is worrisome that, despite funding from government and partners, 44% of the household’s out-of-pocket expenditure is on malaria.
Disturbed that Nigeria continues to bear the disproportionate brunt of the malaria toll accounting for 27% and 23% of global cases and deaths respectively, he said there had been a growing political commitment at country, regional and international levels to tackle the disease.
“The most recent being Mr President’s commitment to increase domestic financing and explore other innovative ways of increasing financing for health; this brings a unique ray of hope towards disease control,” he enthused.