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SPEECH OF HIS MAJESTY KING MSWATI 111 PRESENTED BY THE RT HON. PRIME MINISTER OF THE KINGDOM OF ESWATINI, AMBROSE MANDVULO DLAMINI
AT UN CLIMATE CHANGE CONFERENCE - COP 25 MEETING,

Madrid, Spain

DECEMBER 2019




Excellencies, Honourable Ministers, 
Distinguished delegates, 
Ladies and Gentlemen.

 
It is my greatest honour to address the UN Climate Change Conference, and I bring with me warm greetings from His Majesty King Mswati III and Her Majesty the Queen Mother of the Kingdom of Eswatini. I would like to thank
 Chile as the Presidency and the host country Spain for generously hosting us here in Madrid, albeit at short notice.

 

Madam President,
 Let me begin by reminding this gathering that this COP is critical as it marks the
 beginning of a concrete implementation of the Paris Agreement in 2020. It is therefore critical that this COP delivers on key issues to operationalize the Paris Agreement. In addition, this COP should enhance ambition on mitigation, adaptation and finance to fast-track efforts towards a less than 2°C world. It is important to note that for countries in Southern Africa like Eswatini, the IPCC 1.5°C Report has highlighted that our countries are likely to become drier and drastically warmer, even under a 1.5 or 2°C of global warming scenario, hence 
enhanced ambition is a necessity for us.



We are calling for a fair, balanced and inclusive process in deliberating on issues in this COP taking into consideration the pressing developmental needs of developing countries especially African countries and the need for ecosystems to adapt naturally as articulated in Article 2 of the convention. 
Eswatini is deeply concerned of the lack of leadership from developed countries responsible for historical greenhouse gas emissions that have significantly contributed to their economic development. It is especially disheartening that some of these developed countries are opting for withdrawal from the Paris agreement while others are reluctant to be part of the Second commitment period of the Kyoto protocol. Such actions further worsen the current trajectory when it comes to attaining a world below 2°C.

The Kingdom of Eswatini therefore calls on developed countries to renew their commitments and demonstrate leadership in making the world a better place for present and future generations. Like most Developing countries Eswatini fully support the agenda of Cope 25.



Madam President, 
Adaptation is no longer an option but a necessity for developing countries as we are already battling impacts of climate change spanning from devastating typhoons, uncontrollable veld fires, deadly floods and resistant pests that threaten not only our environment and fragile ecosystems but also our very livelihoods. It is therefore important that this COP addresses both mitigation and adaption in a balanced manner. In addition, the Warsaw International Mechanism for Loss and Damage (WIM) is a critical for addressing needs of developing countries related to loss and damage under the Convention and this COP should deliver on enhancing the effectiveness of the WIM as a mechanism of the Convention. Eswatini welcomes the USD 9.7 billion pledged by developed countries under the first replenishment period of the Green Climate Fund. However, this fall very short compared to the initial pledge of USD 10.2 billion and way below the USD 100 billion per year by 2020. Such funds are inadequate for the implementation of developing countries’ NDCs. In that regard, Eswatini calls for additional, adequate,
 predictable grant-based financial resources to enable developing countries to deliver on concrete mitigation and adaptation actions.
 Lastly Madam President, Eswatini wishes yourself and all delegations in this COP fruitful deliberations and we pledge our commitment towards a fruitful outcome. The world is watching Madam President and is counting on us to deliver on concrete decisions that will keep the global temperature way below 2°C and safe enough for future generations.


The Republic of Taiwan has been very instrumental in addressing the issues of climate change. Our prayers are for the admission of Taiwan and that the world will recognize the strides she has taken and admit her to such forums.


I thank you Madam President

STATEMENT BY THE RT HON PRIME MINISTER

MR AMBROSE M.  DLAMINI

Read on his behalf by the Deputy Prime Minister Senator Themba Masuku

AT THE WORLD AIDS DAY COMMEMORATION

 

AT EZULWINI SPORTS GROUND

 

SUNDAY 1 DECEMBER 2019

Your Royal Highnesses

Chiefs

Honourable Ministers

Members of both Houses of Parliament

Your Excellency Ambassador of the European Union

Your Excellency United States Ambassador

United Nations Resident Coordinator

Representatives of the United Nations family

Chairperson and members of the NERCHA Council

Executive Director of NERCHA and Staff

Civil Society representatives

People Living with HIV

Distinguished Guests

Ladies and Gentlemen

It is my honour, on behalf of His Majesty’s Government, to join you all here today for the commemoration of the World AIDS day.

I am unable to attend in person due to an assignment that has taken me out of the country and the Deputy Prime Minister has agreed to read my remarks.

As the Kingdom of Eswatini joins the rest of the world to commemorate the World AIDS Day today it is encouraging to observe that the country is steadily gaining control over the HIV epidemic. On this day where we reflect and reaffirm our commitment to work together in the fight against HIV, we fortify our determination to achieve the national goal of ending AIDS as public health threat by 2022. 

The theme for the World AIDS Day commemoration this year is “Communities make the difference.” It recognizes the benefits of working together as different communities to succeed in achieving a common goal.  The strength of any community is in bringing together ideas, energy and resources, so that gaps and weakness of each other are overcome. The community then becomes a strong and formidable force that can overcome any difficulty.  Working together as communities is crucial, if we are to effectively accelerate the HIV response towards ending AIDS.

Allow me from the onset to express my profound gratitude to Their Majesties whose personal commitment and wise leadership in the HIV and AIDS response has created an enabling environment for all the positive progress made thus far. Indeed, the successes that the country has made in the response is a result of concerted efforts by the different communities ranging from our partners, the donor community internal and external, civil society, churches, public and private sectors and imiphakatsi.

Programme director, distinguished guests, the 2019 Estimates and Projections indicate that the country is on the right path towards ending AIDS. However, Emaswati will only achieve the target of ending AIDS within the set timeframe, if we all accelerate the uptake of HIV services to further reduce HIV infections among men, adolescents, young women between 15 - 24 years and among key populations at substantive risk of HIV infection. There is an urgent need to close the tap. It is worrisome to note that there are still about 7000 new HIV infections every year.

May I encourage all of you gathered here and across the country to know your HIV status in time then take the necessary action whatever result. If you test HIV positive, take ARVs, and if HIV negative, use all the options available for you to stay HIV negative. Young people you have the option to delay sex. This is the only way to avoid HIV infection. Let us refrain from the abuse of drugs and alcohol as these do not only make us vulnerable to HIV infection, but is a threat to our desired prosperous future.

Condoms are available for those who have started sex and ARVs are available for pregnant women who are HIV positive for them to give birth to uninfected babies. Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision is available for men to reduce the chances of getting infected with HIV.

Government is relentlessly supporting the delivery of HIV programmes, despite the current fiscal challenges. For example, Government has committed to procure all first line ARV’s for citizens to ensure availability and accessibility to all people who test HIV positive.   The ingenious adoption of ARVs has allowed people who are living with HIV to live longer and healthier lives. HIV in Eswatini is no longer a death sentence.

Enrolling all people who test HIV positive on ART, regardless of their CD4 count, has contributed to the significant reduction of new HIV infections by almost 50%, between 2011 and 2017. This has been a worthwhile investment that the Government continues to commit to with the knowledge that this life saving endeavor will contribute immensely to the epidemic control in this country.

It is also important to note that 75% of our population is HIV negative, therefore there is need to focus on preventing new infections to ensure that the negative status is maintained. We collectively need to reduce the number of people who get infected annually by 85% by 2022. This can be achieved if we work together as communities. The country has clearly articulated strategies on how this can be achieved in the National HIV and AIDS Strategic Framework for HIV and AIDS 2018 – 2023, which is also referred to as the “The Last Mile”. 

Indeed, the ground has been leveled and I believe there is an enabling environment for the HIV response.

Recently the National HIV Prevention Policy was launched. The policy, together with other existing national guidelines ensures that all people, no matter their age, religion or sexual orientation can freely access all HIV services.

I am aware that during the World AIDS Campaign dialogues held in different regions, thoughts and ideas were shared on how we can intensify our goal towards ending AIDS in the country. I want to encourage the rest of us who did not attend these dialogues to continue to speak out and share ideas on steps to be taken to reduce HIV incidence, especially among adolescent girls and young women, who are most vulnerable to being newly infected with HIV. Your resourceful contribution will be used to strengthen the way current HIV prevention, treatment, care and support services are delivered. 

May I now take this time to honour all those people living with HIV who have taken an HIV test, have enrolled and adhered to treatment. Under the theme “Communities make the difference” I implore you, the community of people living with HIV, to support each and to adhere to treatment

Today let us all with one voice denounce all HIV related stigma and discrimination which is as devastating as the illness itself because it results in abandonment by a partner or family, failure to access medical services, and gender-based violence. These consequences mean that people will be less likely to come in for HIV testing, to disclose their HIV status, adopt positive HIV prevention behaviour or access treatment care and support, which retards the progress in the HIV response.   In our communities, be it at work or in our social groupings, let us embrace and support those who are living with HIV.

Finally, His Majesty’s Government would like to sincerely appreciate all our development and funding partners who continue to support the national response at all levels. Without your generous contributions, we would not have achieved the results that have changed the lives of Emaswati.  My appreciation also goes to the implementing partners. You are the foot soldiers that make things happen. Keep up the good work.

I thank you all. Siyabonga!


STATEMENT BY HIS EXCELLENCY THE RIGHT HONOURABLE PRIME MINISTER, MR AMBROSE MANDVULO DLAMINI ON THE COMMEMORATION OF THE WORLD AIDS DAY 2019

 

The Kingdom of Eswatini joins the rest of the world today to commemorate the World AIDS Day. It is encouraging to observe that the country is steadily gaining control over the HIV epidemic. As we reflect and reaffirm our determination to work together in the fight against HIV, let us all commit to achieving the national goal of ending AIDS as public health threat by 2022. 

The theme for World AIDS Day this year is “Communities make the difference” and it recognizes the benefits of working together as different communities to succeed in achieving a common goal.  At the peak of the HIV epidemic, it was the communities who organized themselves to provide home based care for the sick, provided psycho-social support to grieving children who had lost their parents and played an oversight role over child-headed homes. Communities united to provide food security for the vulnerable through the Indlunkhulu project among many others efforts. This is how we sailed through the most difficult times in the HIV response.

As we accelerate towards ending AIDS, we take lessons from the past that communities do make a difference. Let communities unite and engage in the last push towards ending AIDS as a public health threat in the Kingdom.  In the different communities that we belong to, let us encourage each other to test, know our status and access the HIV prevention services that have been availed to all. If someone has tested HIV positive, let us support them to enroll and adhere to treatment. Let us do away with all forms of stigma and discrimination as it will only retard our efforts.  As the Government of Eswatini we are committed to supporting all efforts to meet our national goal.

I humbly thank His Majesty King Mswati III and The Queen Mother Indlovukazi for their wise leadership and commitment to the HIV response.  My sincere appreciation also goes to our partners for the financial and technical support they have given to the Kingdom of Eswatini that has enabled us to realise numerous victories in the fight against HIV. The battle has not yet been won and we should all unite to emerge victorious. HIV yindzaba yetfu sonkhe.

Thank you.

STATEMENT BY THE RT HON PRIME MINISTER

MR AMBROSE M.  DLAMINI

Read on his behalf by the Deputy Prime Minister Senator Themba Masuku

AT THE WORLD AIDS DAY COMMEMORATION

 

AT EZULWINI SPORTS GROUND

 

SUNDAY 1 DECEMBER 2019

 

Your Royal Highnesses

Chiefs

Honourable Ministers

Members of both Houses of Parliament

Your Excellency Ambassador of the European Union

Your Excellency United States Ambassador

United Nations Resident Coordinator

Representatives of the United Nations family

Chairperson and members of the NERCHA Council

Executive Director of NERCHA and Staff

Civil Society representatives

People Living with HIV

Distinguished Guests

Ladies and Gentlemen

It is my honour, on behalf of His Majesty’s Government, to join you all here today for the commemoration of the World AIDS day.

I am unable to attend in person due to an assignment that has taken me out of the country and the Deputy Prime Minister has agreed to read my remarks.

As the Kingdom of Eswatini joins the rest of the world to commemorate the World AIDS Day today it is encouraging to observe that the country is steadily gaining control over the HIV epidemic. On this day where we reflect and reaffirm our commitment to work together in the fight against HIV, we fortify our determination to achieve the national goal of ending AIDS as public health threat by 2022. 

The theme for the World AIDS Day commemoration this year is “Communities make the difference.” It recognizes the benefits of working together as different communities to succeed in achieving a common goal.  The strength of any community is in bringing together ideas, energy and resources, so that gaps and weakness of each other are overcome. The community then becomes a strong and formidable force that can overcome any difficulty.  Working together as communities is crucial, if we are to effectively accelerate the HIV response towards ending AIDS.

Allow me from the onset to express my profound gratitude to Their Majesties whose personal commitment and wise leadership in the HIV and AIDS response has created an enabling environment for all the positive progress made thus far. Indeed, the successes that the country has made in the response is a result of concerted efforts by the different communities ranging from our partners, the donor community internal and external, civil society, churches, public and private sectors and imiphakatsi.

Programme director, distinguished guests, the 2019 Estimates and Projections indicate that the country is on the right path towards ending AIDS. However, Emaswati will only achieve the target of ending AIDS within the set timeframe, if we all accelerate the uptake of HIV services to further reduce HIV infections among men, adolescents, young women between 15 - 24 years and among key populations at substantive risk of HIV infection. There is an urgent need to close the tap. It is worrisome to note that there are still about 7000 new HIV infections every year.

May I encourage all of you gathered here and across the country to know your HIV status in time then take the necessary action whatever result. If you test HIV positive, take ARVs, and if HIV negative, use all the options available for you to stay HIV negative. Young people you have the option to delay sex. This is the only way to avoid HIV infection. Let us refrain from the abuse of drugs and alcohol as these do not only make us vulnerable to HIV infection, but is a threat to our desired prosperous future.

Condoms are available for those who have started sex and ARVs are available for pregnant women who are HIV positive for them to give birth to uninfected babies. Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision is available for men to reduce the chances of getting infected with HIV.

Government is relentlessly supporting the delivery of HIV programmes, despite the current fiscal challenges. For example, Government has committed to procure all first line ARV’s for citizens to ensure availability and accessibility to all people who test HIV positive.   The ingenious adoption of ARVs has allowed people who are living with HIV to live longer and healthier lives. HIV in Eswatini is no longer a death sentence.

Enrolling all people who test HIV positive on ART, regardless of their CD4 count, has contributed to the significant reduction of new HIV infections by almost 50%, between 2011 and 2017. This has been a worthwhile investment that the Government continues to commit to with the knowledge that this life saving endeavor will contribute immensely to the epidemic control in this country.

It is also important to note that 75% of our population is HIV negative, therefore there is need to focus on preventing new infections to ensure that the negative status is maintained. We collectively need to reduce the number of people who get infected annually by 85% by 2022. This can be achieved if we work together as communities. The country has clearly articulated strategies on how this can be achieved in the National HIV and AIDS Strategic Framework for HIV and AIDS 2018 – 2023, which is also referred to as the “The Last Mile”. 

Indeed, the ground has been leveled and I believe there is an enabling environment for the HIV response.

Recently the National HIV Prevention Policy was launched. The policy, together with other existing national guidelines ensures that all people, no matter their age, religion or sexual orientation can freely access all HIV services.

I am aware that during the World AIDS Campaign dialogues held in different regions, thoughts and ideas were shared on how we can intensify our goal towards ending AIDS in the country. I want to encourage the rest of us who did not attend these dialogues to continue to speak out and share ideas on steps to be taken to reduce HIV incidence, especially among adolescent girls and young women, who are most vulnerable to being newly infected with HIV. Your resourceful contribution will be used to strengthen the way current HIV prevention, treatment, care and support services are delivered. 

May I now take this time to honour all those people living with HIV who have taken an HIV test, have enrolled and adhered to treatment. Under the theme “Communities make the difference” I implore you, the community of people living with HIV, to support each and to adhere to treatment

Today let us all with one voice denounce all HIV related stigma and discrimination which is as devastating as the illness itself because it results in abandonment by a partner or family, failure to access medical services, and gender-based violence. These consequences mean that people will be less likely to come in for HIV testing, to disclose their HIV status, adopt positive HIV prevention behaviour or access treatment care and support, which retards the progress in the HIV response.   In our communities, be it at work or in our social groupings, let us embrace and support those who are living with HIV.

Finally, His Majesty’s Government would like to sincerely appreciate all our development and funding partners who continue to support the national response at all levels. Without your generous contributions, we would not have achieved the results that have changed the lives of Emaswati.  My appreciation also goes to the implementing partners. You are the foot soldiers that make things happen. Keep up the good work.

I thank you all. Siyabonga!

STATEMENT BY HIS EXCELLENCY THE RIGHT HONOURABLE PRIME MINISTER, MR AMBROSE MANDVULO DLAMINI ON THE COMMEMORATION OF THE WORLD AIDS DAY 2019

 

The Kingdom of Eswatini joins the rest of the world today to commemorate the World AIDS Day. It is encouraging to observe that the country is steadily gaining control over the HIV epidemic. As we reflect and reaffirm our determination to work together in the fight against HIV, let us all commit to achieving the national goal of ending AIDS as public health threat by 2022. 

The theme for World AIDS Day this year is “Communities make the difference” and it recognizes the benefits of working together as different communities to succeed in achieving a common goal.  At the peak of the HIV epidemic, it was the communities who organized themselves to provide home based care for the sick, provided psycho-social support to grieving children who had lost their parents and played an oversight role over child-headed homes. Communities united to provide food security for the vulnerable through the Indlunkhulu project among many others efforts. This is how we sailed through the most difficult times in the HIV response.

As we accelerate towards ending AIDS, we take lessons from the past that communities do make a difference. Let communities unite and engage in the last push towards ending AIDS as a public health threat in the Kingdom.  In the different communities that we belong to, let us encourage each other to test, know our status and access the HIV prevention services that have been availed to all. If someone has tested HIV positive, let us support them to enroll and adhere to treatment. Let us do away with all forms of stigma and discrimination as it will only retard our efforts.  As the Government of Eswatini we are committed to supporting all efforts to meet our national goal.

I humbly thank His Majesty King Mswati III and The Queen Mother Indlovukazi for their wise leadership and commitment to the HIV response.  My sincere appreciation also goes to our partners for the financial and technical support they have given to the Kingdom of Eswatini that has enabled us to realise numerous victories in the fight against HIV. The battle has not yet been won and we should all unite to emerge victorious. HIV yindzaba yetfu sonkhe.

Thank you.

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