THE United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Executive Director, Dr Natalia Kanem says a total of US$264 billion investment is required to transform the future of women’s health as well as the Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) for girls and women.
By Michael Gwarisa in Nairobi, Kenya
Addressing a media briefing, Dr Kanem said the Narobi Summit on International Conference on Population Development (ICPD) is to mobilise the political will and financial commitments so urgently needed to implement the program of action that was agreed by governments in 1994 at the ICPD as well as during a political declaration in April, 2019.
Today we have learnt the cost of what it will take to achieve three important results that will transform the lives of millions of women and girls and communities around the world. These three transformative results are Zero Unmet needs for contraception so that women and girls can plan their families and plan their reproductive rights according to their wishes.
“The second Zero needless deaths during pregnancy and child birth. Maternal mortality accounts for deaths of over 800 women every single day and some of these women are not women, they are girls. They are girls under the age of 18, pregnant too soon, married too young who lack the reproductive choices that this summit is addressing,” said Dr Kanem.
The third Zero according to Dr Kanem was to silence and completely curb Gender Based Violence (GBV) which has reared its ugly head in most African and developing countries amidst indications that one in every three women and girls experience GBV at some point in their lifetime.
“I would like to reveal the costs of finishing the unfinished business according to these three Zeros. The cost will be US$264 Billion over the course of the period through 2030. What this US$264 billion over the next 10 years will do is that it is an investment in humanity and a cost that we cannot afford not do and all of us can play a role as private sector, foundations and civil society.”
The costs represents over US$7.5 billion in new investment over the next decade alongside technical commitments that will leverage the innovation and ingenuity of the private sector towards achieving the vision of the Nairobi statement.
Meanwhile, the government of Denmark has committed an additional US$33 million to fulfill ICPD commitemnts, according to Rasmus Prehn, the Denamrk Minister for Development Cooperation.
“We have been in front globally since 1994, we will continue to fight to improve the health of girls and women and girls rights. This summit is about how to accelerate not what to accelerate. It is about inclusiveness and making new innovative alliances between countries, civil society, business, and academia generations
“It is about mobilising political and financial support and real change. First of all, real change is about supporting youths to fulfill their dreams for a life with dignity, with equal rights for all. It is for healthy lives, education and jobs. Denmark as a major international donor is supporting SRHR. This year, we have already committed more than US$110 million. In my commitment statement today, we committed to going even further, we will increase our support with almost US$33 million,” said Prehn.