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19th INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON AIDS AND SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED INFECTIONS IN AFRICA
ICASA 2017 – COTE D’IVOIRE
2nd INTERNATIONAL STEERING COMMITTEE (ISC) MEETING
OPENING SPEECH OF
RAYMONDE GOUDOU COFFIE, MINISTER OF HEALTH AND PUBLIC HYGIENE
Abidjan (Hôtel Palm Club),
Thursday, 30th March 2017 at 14:30
Mr. President of the council of the Society for Aids in Africa (SAA), President of ICASA 2017-Cote d’Ivoire,
Mr. Resident Representative of WHO;
Mrs. Country Director of UNAIDS;
Dear representative of Abidjan Autonomous District Governor;
Dear representatives of the United Nations agencies and specialized institutions;
Honorable members of the International Steering Committee (ISC);
Dear representatives of the civil society;
Dear representatives of the community, actors of the fight against Aids;
Dear representatives of media,
Ladies and gentlemen;
I would like, on behalf of the Ivorian government and on my own, to wish a warm welcome « Akwaba » to all the personalities and guests who have made the trip to Cote d’Ivoire to take part in the second meeting of the International Steering Committee (ISC) in order to prepare the organization of ICASA 2017-Cote d’Ivoire.
Ladies and gentlemen,
Dear ISC members,
I benefited from your kind support when I was going through the terrible ordeal which prevented me from taking part in the first ISC meeting last November.
Please accept that I reiterate my sincere gratitude to Doctor Ahmed IHAB, President of the council of the Society for Aids in Africa (SAA), and to each of you for this mark of sympathy towards me.
I welcome the good performance of this first meeting whose conclusions indicate the quality of your work. I especially appreciated the rigor observed in the selection of ICASA 2017-Cote d’Ivoire logo and in the formulation of the conference themes and sub-themes scheduled for December.
It is here the place where to reiterate my warm congratulations to the winner of the design contest who made it possible to get a beautiful picture truly expressive and in relation with the chosen theme, namely: « Africa: a different approach towards the end of AIDS».
This theme reflects the firm commitment of Cote d’Ivoire and Africa to work together to fight Aids and STIs on the continent with the view of eradicating it by 2030.
This eradication will be achieved through the application of the 90-90-90 approach recommended by UNAIDS.
Indeed, the Ivorian Government made this fight a priority by the regular holding of the National Aids Council (NAC) personally chaired since 2014 by His Excellency Alassane OUATTARA, President of the Republic.
This NAC aims at accelerating the response to STIs and Aids to achieve targets 90-90-90; at controlling the epidemic by 2020 and at eradicating the epidemic by 2030.
Ladies and gentlemen of the ISC;
The first meeting also mentioned the need to set up the Local Secretariat. I would like to inform and assure you that this Secretariat was set up trough a cell. It will be progressively strengthened with other resource persons with expertise in various fields.
Premises which will serve as offices for the Local Secretariat are also in full equipment and will be delivered in April 2017.
All these steps were necessary to operationalize the implementation of ICASA 2017-Cote d’Ivoire preparation in connection with the International Secretariat based in Accra.
I would like to take this opportunity to pay respects to SAA coordinator and his team for their support in ICASA organization.
Ladies and gentlemen,
Dear ISC members;
We have two days of deliberations to decide on several issues as important as each other. I would mention among others:
As you know, the Ivorian government attaches great importance to the success of the 19th ICASA conference preparations and expects the collaboration of all ISC members to this end.
It is in this momentum that I would like to urge and encourage you because I know the task is not easy.
But given the quality of ISC members and the commitment of each one of you, I remain convinced that we will achieve our objectives as it was the case for the first ISC meeting.
It is then on these words of hope that I officially declare open the work of the 2nd ISC meeting of ICASA 2017-Cote d’Ivoire.
Thank you !