In October, Daniel Mwamba, of Alliance member Zambia Road Safety Trust (ZRST), was asked by the Minister of Health to attend the WHO Global Conference on Noncommunicable Diseases (NCDs) in Montevideo, Uruguay. Originally, the Zambian attendees were set to include Edgar Chagwa Lungu, Zambia’s President, and Chitalu Chilufya, Minister of Health, but owing to other engagements, only Daniel and Andrew Silumesii, Director of Public Health, attended.
It is a significant sign of the influence and trust that Daniel and ZRST have developed with the Zambian government that they should ask him to be a part of this delegation. Over the past three years, ZRST has been working with the government to improve road safety in Zambia. He consulted on the remarks that the president was due to give during a panel discussion at the Global Conference. Daniel has also been appointed by the Ministry of Health as the key lead for collecting data for WHO’s Global Status Report on Road Safety 2018.
The conference, which focused on all NCDs, not just road safety, featured a review of how WHO regions are performing with regard to NCDs, and high-level panel discussions—with heads of state and health ministers from around the world reporting on interventions and innovations in their own countries. During the conference, Daniel met the new WHO Director-General, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, and they discussed the need for African countries to create an alliance to address NCDs.
On his return to Zambia, Daniel wrote a report, which he submitted to the WHO Country Director, putting forward a proposal to create an alliance of NGOs working to address NCDs in Zambia. The Director was excited by Daniel’s proposal, and, after a recent meeting, the Zambian government agreed to support the project. Now, with the government’s backing, Daniel and ZRST are in the first stages of identifying NGOs working with different NCDs to form a part of this alliance.
We look forward to hearing more from ZRST about this alliance and the impact it has on the interventions and interrelation of NCDs in Zambia. Read more about ZRST HERE.