Nigeria, US to sign agreement on HIV/AIDS
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Last Updated: Wednesday, August 18, 2010, 11:33
  
Abuja: Nigeria and the United States will soon sign an agreement to enable the oil rich African country have access to technical assistance needed to step up the crusade against the HIV/AIDS pandemic.

The leader of the US delegation, James Patrick said the anticipated framework agreement will provide technical support and drugs for the treatment of HIV/AIDS to decrease the incidence of the scourge.

"The document when signed will support Nigeria's National Health Strategic Development Plan which will enable Nigeria attains the Millennium Development Goals." Patrick stated.

He said the accord will help in shoring up the country's strategic health development plan from 2010-2015 which will protect the vulnerable population especially women and children.

Nigeria's health minister, Professor Onyebuchi Chukwu said both countries have met to reiterate their commitment towards combating the HIV/AIDS scourge in the country.

"Nigeria is to provide leadership for HIV/AIDS response activities and coordination and also to increase Government funding from 7 per cent to 50 per cent for the control of the disease." Chukwu said.

Nigeria which has a population of 150 million has the third-largest number of people living with HIV with a prevalence rate among adults of 15 to 49 estimated to be 3.9 percent.

The US describes Nigeria as a key partner in the region and the continent due to its population and far reaching influence.

Despite the souring of relations between the two countries during the military era, the return to democracy brought improvement in bilateral relationship.

PTI


First Published: Wednesday, August 18, 2010, 11:33


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