New York, 21 April 2010 - Secretary-General's remarks at visit to "Malaria: Blood, Sweat and Tears" exhibit on World Malaria Day 2010Your Royal Highness, Princess Astrid of Belgium, Professor Awa Marie Coll-Seck, (Executive Director, The Roll Back Malaria Partnership), Mr. Sunil Mehra, (Executive Director, Malaria Consortium), Ms. Anne Veneman, Executive Director of UNICEF, Excellencies, Distinguished guests,Ladies and gentlemen,
I am honoured to be here.
This marvellous exhibition tells the story of malaria, a story of suffering, pain and loss, and -- more recently -- a story of hope.
I thank photographer Adam Nadel for these compelling images.
I also thank particularly Princess Astrid for being with us.
Her commitment as a Special Representative for the Roll Back Malaria Partnership has helped keep malaria high on the development agenda.
Let us be clear: malaria is a disease of the poor.
Wealthier countries eradicated malaria a long time ago. Here in the United States, that public health triumph was achieved 150 years ago.
Time and again, countries have shown that defeating malaria is simply a question of resources.
It is relatively easy to prevent. It is easy to detect and cure.
There is no need for a quarter of a billion people to become sick each year. There is no reason for 900,000 to die.
Ladies and gentlemen,
Two years ago, I called for malaria prevention and treatment programmes to be made universally available to at-risk populations by the end of 2010.
I am pleased to say we have made much progress, especially in the provision of treated bed nets.
Through the work of my Special Envoy on Malaria, Mr. Ray Chambers, in close collaboration with all partners in the Roll Back Malaria partnership, we are on track to achieve universal coverage in sub-Saharan Africa by the end of this year and zero deaths from malaria by 2015.
Where countries have been able to provide bed nets and treatment to significant proportions of their populations, malaria cases and deaths have fallen by as much as 50 per cent.
Overall child mortality rates have declined too.
These achievements show that the battle against malaria can be won.
They show that development aid for health works.
And they give great cause for optimism in our work towards the Millennium Development Goals of reducing child mortality and improving maternal health.
In September, I will convene a summit to review progress towards all eight MDGs.
My goal is nothing less than an agenda for action for the time that remains until the agreed deadline of 2015.
A practical, results-oriented plan, with concrete steps and timelines.
We can draw strength and valuable lessons from the fight against malaria.
We can see what can be achieved when all members of the international community join forces and align their efforts with those of developing countries.
It is a practical example of the eighth Millennium Development Goal: to build a new partnership for development.
On this World Malaria Day, let us take inspiration from our successes.
They tell us that, with commitment and resources, we can eradicate malaria and achieve all our global development objectives.
Statements on 21 April 2010