MMV welcomes appointment of UK MP as Global Advocate for Malaria

Rt Hon Stephen O'Brien hopes to strengthen engagement of policy makers

17 May 2013

Roll Back Malaria Board Chair, Hon Victor Makwenge today designated the Rt. Hon. Stephen O’Brien, Member of Parliament in the United Kingdom, as Global Advocate for the RBM Partnership. In this new role Rt. Hon. Stephen O’Brien MP will work with parliamentarians and other elected officials in malaria endemic countries to help reinforce political commitment to accelerating the fight against malaria in the countdown to the 2015 Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

Announcing the appointment during the Ministerial session of the RBM Board, Dr Makwenge commended Stephen O’Brien's dedication and established leadership in the fight against malaria, and welcomed his timely support, "2013 is a critical moment in time for the RBM Partnership. Less than 1000 days remain to the 2015 targets, and a good number of countries still face considerable hurdles in scaling up malaria control," said Dr Makwenge. "Your passion for malaria eradication, your experience in working with other Parliamentarians to prioritize malaria, makes you uniquely qualified to help us build greater awareness and help Parliamentarians influence governments to increase national allocations for health, and in particular, malaria. This vital role will be key to our continued progress in tackling this disease."

Malaria is a leading global killer and a consistent driver of poverty worldwide. It's main casualties are women, children and the poor in Africa. According to The World Malaria Report 2012, there were about 219 million cases of malaria in 2010 and an estimated 660 000 deaths globally.

Stephen O'Brien has a strong, long-standing and committed interest in Africa, security and development. He is currently serving as the UK Prime Minister's Special Envoy to the Sahel, having served as a International Development Minister in the Coalition Government, between May 2010 and September 2012.

Read the full story on the RBM website.

See photos from the 24th RBM Board Meeting on the RBM Flickr Photo Gallery.