General News of Monday, 29 January 2018
The First Lady, Mrs Rebecca Akufo-Addo, on Saturday participated in the Steering Committee Meeting of the Organisation of African First Ladies Against HIV/AIDS (OAFLA) underway in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
The First Lady attended the meeting as the representative of the West African Block that are members of the Organisation.
Ghana was elected onto the Steering Committee of the OAFLA for a two-year term in July 2017, during the maiden appearance of Mrs Akufo-Addo at the meeting.
The Steering Committee Meeting is basically attended by two representatives from each of the five regions comprising the Northern, Southern, Western, Eastern, and Central regions of Africa.
Ghana and Burkina Faso represent the West African Region on the Committee. However, her Burkinabe counterpart was absent from the Committee Session on Saturday.
Meanwhile, other first ladies that participated in the meeting, which was chaired by Mrs Roman Tesfaye, the First Lady of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, who doubles as the Chairperson of OAFLA, as well as Mrs Margaret Gakuo Kenyatta, the Kenyan First Lady and Mrs Hinda Deby Itno, the First Lady of Chad.
The Steering Committee Meeting forms a crucial part of the ongoing two-day 20th Ordinary General Assembly of OAFLA that would enable the Committee members to discuss the recommendations of the Technical Advisers of the various member countries, review a designed Communique to be issued at the close of the session, and also to adopt the General Assembly Agenda.
The Session is being held within the margins of the African Union (AU) Assembly of Heads of State hosted in Addis Ababa.
This year’s AU Meeting marks the 30th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the African Union, in which President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is participating.
The OAFLA General Assembly, held twice every year, allows the first ladies to brief each other about their activities to improve the fight against HIV and AIDS in their respective countries.
It is also for the OAFLA Secretariat to brief members on what it has done and how they have supported country offices to improve on their HIV response.
The 20th Session had the theme: “Transforming Africa through Prioritising Children, Adolescents and Mothers in the Fight against HIV”.
In attendance were Mrs Mokowa Blay Adu-Gyamfi, the Director General of the Ghana AIDS Commission who is also the Technical Adviser on HIV and AIDS to the First Lady.
Mrs Akufo-Addo will attend a closed session today, Sunday, January 28, that would be participated in by all the first ladies and the technical advisors, who would further be discussing the recommendations and endorsements made at the Steering Committee level.
There is also the main OAFLA General Assembly Open Session to be held on Monday, January 29, where Mrs Akufo-Addo would be sharing with members on how she had personally contributed to the fight against HIV and AIDS, especially to the elimination of Mother-to-Child Transmission.
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