Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Open Letter to H.E. The President of Uganda on the Status of the HIV & AIDS Response and Management.

CIVIL SOCIETY INTER-CONSTITUENCY COORDINATION COMMITTEE

Open Letter to H.E. The President of Uganda on the Status of the HIV & AIDS Response and Management.

The Civil Society Inter Constituency Coordination Committee is a forum that brings together representatives of the Civil Society Organisations under HIV & AIDS, TB and Malaria in order to develop consensus and a common voice on key issues at national and international levels.

The Civil Society fraternity in Uganda would like to acknowledge the progress being realised in the HIV & AIDS response including other core sectors like TB and Malaria. Recent reductions in new HIV infections and a decline in number of children being born with the virus provide hope for an HIV & AIDS free generation.

However, the Civil Society Organisations under the Civil Society Inter – Constituency Coordination Committee would like to draw your attention to the following issues that are affecting the response and require your urgent intervention if Uganda is to achieve its vision of Zero new HIV infections, Zero Discrimination and Zero HIV related deaths.

1-   Operationalisation of the National AIDS Trust Fund

Your Excellency, Uganda needs to move quickly to operationalise the National AIDS Trust Fund as a key strategy for mobilising and managing local resources and funds for the HIV & AIDS response.

 Your Excellency, Uganda needs to increase its revenue to end AIDS. This must come through the national budget and through innovative sources such as the National AIDS Trust Fund.

Uganda must expand its national commitment while we ensure donors continue to do their part. Currently, close to 80% of all HIV & AIDS funding in country is donated by external governments. This is not a good sign of commitment on behalf of our government.

Securing domestic resources is the only guarantee of ensuring that those who need treatment continue to receive it and hence being able to move close to zero new infections.

We therefore specifically call upon your Excellency to:

-          Impress upon the Minister of Health, Minister of Finance, Planning & Economic Development, Uganda AIDS Commission and the Parliamentary Committee on HIV & AIDS to move quickly and ensure that the necessary regulations regarding the National AIDS Trust Fund are brought before the floor of Parliament for debate and adoption. The minister of health should work with all stakeholders, including civil society, to develop robust regulations that reflect core values and principles of additionality, multi stakeholder governance, accountability and sufficiency.
-          Urge you, your Excellency to take a personal interest and ensure that the National AIDS Trust Fund is operational before the term of the current Parliament expires.

2-  The Management Crisis at the Uganda AIDS Commission.

Your Excellency, we have noted with concern consistent press reports about the leadership struggles between the Director General and Chaiperson of the Uganda AIDS Commission. The role of the Uganda AIDS Commission in ensuring that the country has a healthy population with all people with HIV accessing treatment and those who are HIV negative remaining free of HIV cannot be over emphasised.

However the current leadership crisis at the Commission makes it very difficult for it to deliver on its mandate. If the current situation is not addressed, the country is at risk of continuing to sink further into pre epidemic years of the early nineties and this will cost more lives.

Considering that the Commission is directly under the President’s office, we call upon your Excellency to:


1-     Urgently intervene and sort out the leadership crisis at the Uganda AIDS Commission.


On behalf of the Civil Society Inter-constituency Coordination Committee (CICC)

Reverend Sam L. Ruteikara| Chairperson CICC

Uganda Network of AIDS Service Organisations (UNASO), CICC Secretariat
Plot 190, Old Kiira Road, Ntinda P.O.BOX 27346, Kampala Uganda
Tel:+256414274730l +256755831021
Email:unaso@unaso.or.ug
Website: www.unaso.or.ug
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Twitter: @UNASO18