President Joyce Mrs Banda has assured the Malawi Interfaith Aids Association (MIAA) of her support in its undertakings pledging she will preside over the forthcoming Global Race Save Lives on HIV and AIDS Campaign International (GRSL) conference which will take place in Lilongwe from October 23 to 26 this year.
Banda made the assurance Thursday at Sanjika Palace in Blantyre where she was briefed by MIAA on the progress made towards the preparations of the GRSL conference.
The President said her Government recognizes the pivotal role played by MIAA through Faith Based Organizations (FBO) in Malawi as such she has pledged to provide support and also be the guest of honour for the official opening of the conference.
“Malawi has witnessed a reduction in HIV and AIDS prevalence rate because of what FBOs in collaboration with other organizations have done and continue to do. Not only that FBOs have also endeavoured to address issues of social, economic and justice.
“As such I wish to pledge my Government’s support to your activities and wish to assure you that I will personally attend the GRSL conference in Lilongwe,” assured the President.
Speaking earlier, Bishop Brighton Malasa who is the chairperson of GRSL National Steering Committee hailed the move taken by the President to support MIAA by among other things pledging to be personally present at the GRSL conference.
He said this is a sign that Government is committed to fight HIV and AIDS in the country.
MIAA’s Council Deputy Chairperson, Bishop Montfort Stima said a number of both local and international delegates have expressed interest to attend the conference.
“Meanwhile over 500 local and international delegates have indicated they will be coming for the conference this coming October,” he said Catholic Bishop Stima.
The GRSL is a model aimed at practicing safe ways of preventing the HIV and AIDS pandemic, giving access to medications for those infected and affected by the virus and encouraging people to go for HIV testing.