Africa-Press – Lesotho. His Majesty King Letsie III left Lesotho attended the launch of the Eswatini Malaria Elimination Fund held in Eswatini over the past weekend. According to the minister of foreign affairs and international relations Lesego Makgothi, King Letsie III was invited to the event by Eswatini King Mswati III who is also the Champion of Malaria in Africa.
Africa is largely affected by malaria and over 20,000 people die of the disease per year. Makgothi said there is a new malaria vaccine, which was recently found, adding it will be launched at the Eswatini meeting.
King Mswati III was elected the Malaria Champion in January 2017 by the African Union (AU), succeeding the president of Chad, Idriss Deby Itno. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), Eswatini is one of three Southern African countries on track to eliminate malaria by 2020.
It has made a significant progress in scaling up malaria control interventions, leading to a significant reduction in malaria burden in that country. It was the first country on the African continent to introduce malaria elimination scorecard to enhance tracking, accountability and action towards malaria elimination.
Malaria is still a top killer of children worldwide, but children in Africa are mostly affected. Every two minutes a child or baby there dies of the disease. Some children can have up to six bouts of malaria in just one year.