Marrakech is hosting the 2nd African Conference on Health Risk Reduction from 27-29 September under the patronage of Morocco's King Mohammed VI.
Administrative leaders, experts, politicians and professionals from Africa and other continents are taking part in this meeting organised by African Global Health and the Moroccan government, which is aimed at avoiding, as far as possible, any risk that threatens general health.
One of the main messages of the conclave is to promote solidarity and strengthen links between different nations in order to achieve effective South-South cooperation, in this case particularly in the field of health.
Health is one of the foundations of any society, and Morocco is cooperating in depth to promote its protection, with events such as this African Conference on Health Risk Reduction.
African Global Health is organising this event, which is supported by the Moroccan Ministry of Health and Social Protection led by Khalid Ait Taleb, the Ministry of Agriculture, Maritime Fisheries, Rural Development, Water and Forestry led by Mohammed Sadiki, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, African Cooperation and Moroccan Expatriates led by Nasser Bourita, the Ministry of Industry and Trade led by Ryad Mezzour, the Ministry of Interior of Minister Abdelouafi Laftit, the Ministry of Economy and Finance represented by Deputy Minister Fouzi Lekjaa, the Ministry of Solidarity, Social Inclusion and Family led by Minister Aawatif Hayar and the Moroccan Association of Addictive Medicine and Pathologies (MAPA).
This international conference brings together African and international decision-makers, politicians and experts from 77 countries to reflect on health aspects in broad public health policy concepts, but also to build the pillars of health in the future, rethinking health in its organic, psychological, economic, social and environmental aspects, working together for a common African health also through culture, education and teaching. The pillars around which the meeting will revolve are health in Africa with special reference to water supply and management, the environment and food security.
The need for health protection
The aim of this meeting is to promote greater integration and development on the African continent, in the search for joint action to promote African development and health protection.
African countries need to consolidate their own health sovereignty by being able to protect the right to the protection of citizens' health, which contributes to greater security in the face of economic, social and political crises, and this is a very important value to take into account in relation to these nations. The clear objective for every African nation is equitable access to quality health services, as in other developed countries with an established welfare state.
For Africa to reach this level, greater investment in health is needed, requiring governmental action in each nation, but also international input from other continents. Collaboration is also expected in terms of technology transfer and prior knowledge acquired from other parts of the world in order to promote greater continental development in this regard. And, in this line, the holding of this African Conference on Health Risk Reduction is very important because of the participation and attendance of administrative officials and experts in the field from other countries.
This is not only beneficial for Africa, it would also positively affect the rest of the planet because we live in a globalised world where health protection in every part of the globe is very important to protect health everywhere.
Africa has always been a welcoming continent with values of solidarity, and is an important player in this cooperation. "Africa is the mother of humanity. Our culture is characterised by family values and solidarity, built on a solid history and deep roots," said Imane Kendili, president of African Global Health.
This entity was born out of the desire of African experts to unite and bring Africans together around their health. It is a non-profit NGO that brings together African experts interested in contributing to the continent's development towards sovereign public health policies that address the health landscape in all its organic, economic, social, educational, identity and cultural aspects; according to the specific realities of the continent.
"We believe that cultural and educational determinants of health must be at the heart of our approach, to ensure that health policies are adapted to the needs and realities of our communities," as Imane Kendili explained.
The concept of "health for all and by all" now stems from the global difficulties experienced with the recent COVID-19 pandemic, which fully awakened everyone's conscience to the need to protect such a precious commodity as health in a global and inclusive manner.
"Our vision is of a united Africa, where countries work hand in hand to ensure the health sovereignty of our continent, using each other's skills and resources in a common developmental and mutually supportive drive. Africa for Africa. We are determined to work tirelessly to achieve our goals, in collaboration with our partners and local governments, to move away from the patient-patient concept to the patient-citizen as a health actor in their community, their country, their continent," as Kendili explained, expressing the hope that all citizens, experts, civil society actors and responsible African citizens "will take up our cause".
The event in Marrakech will be attended by experts from all over the world and personalities from the African continent's healthcare sector, such as Morgan Chetty, president of the "Kwazulu Natal Doctors Healthcare Coalition" from South Africa, Amit N. Thakker, CEO of Africa Health Business from Kenya, Tendai Mhizha, international consultant and strategic advisor from Zimbabwe, Salah Daak, international consultant and strategic advisor from Sudan, Marie Claire Makuza, coordinator at Universal Health Coverage from Zambia, Patrick Luwaga, head of the Clinical Network at After Action Review Health Services from Uganda, Koleka Mlisana, head of the Department of Microbiology at the University of Kwazulu Natal in South Africa, and Dr Rania Mamdouh, a psychiatrist at Cairo University in Egypt.
The panels to be discussed will be "Health and environment harm reduction: air quality, global warming, respiratory diseases", "Food security in Africa and the world: what harm reduction?", "Nutrition and health education: future South-South perspectives", "Drinking water: continental investment and capital" and "Risk reduction and tomorrow's ecosystems: the African equation".