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ExxonMobil marks 20 years of fight against malaria in Nigeria

ExxonMobil logo

ExxonMobil logo

By Emmanuella Anokam

ExxonMobil Foundation, in collaboration with ExxonMobil affiliate Companies in Nigeria have announced renewed support for partner organisations committed to ending malaria in Nigeria.

The ExxonMobil said its grants, among other scheduled activities penciled down to mark the “World Malaria Day” also marked the 20th anniversary of its intervention and support for programmes to reduce the burden of malaria in Nigeria.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that April 25 is celebrated as World Malaria Day globally.

It recognises global efforts to fight against malaria.

About 3.3 billion people in 106 countries are said to be at risk of malaria.

Malaria is a preventable and treatable disease that continues to have a devastating impact on the health and livelihoods of people around the world.

In 2020, there were an estimated 241 million new cases of malaria and 627 000 malaria-related deaths in 85 countries.

More than two thirds of deaths were among children under the age of five living in the World Health Organisation (WHO) African Region.

This year’s theme is “Harness Innovation to Reduce the Malaria Disease Burden and Save Lives’’.

Richard Laing, the Chairman and Managing Director of ExxonMobil affiliate Companies in a statement on Monday said for the past 20 years, ExxonMobil’s Malaria Initiative had provided more than 37.4 million dollars (more than N15 billion).

This, he said was in cash grants to partners working to develop community-based solutions in Nigeria.

Continuing this legacy, he said it had announced its 2022 grant recipients, which included PanAfricare, in conjunction with NBA Power Forward to foster the development of Nigerian youth through sports, life skills and malaria education.

“The Grassroot Soccer will use the convening power of soccer to increase awareness of malaria and HIV/AIDS among young people across Nigeria through sports curriculum,’’ he said.

He mentioned Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, as another recipient to advance scientific knowledge and understanding toward the eradication of malaria.

“This World Malaria Day will mark ExxonMobil’s contributions over the past two decades that have helped equip and strengthen resilience within our communities to fight against malaria.

“Thanks to these efforts Nigeria is better prepared to continue the progress we have made and work toward a malaria-free future,” he said.

He said the ExxonMobil’s Malaria Initiative worked with nonprofit partners and leading global health organisations to advance progress against the disease in malaria-endemic countries by supporting malaria education and awareness.

According to him, the initiative is also aimed at improving access to tools for prevention, diagnosis and treatment, strengthening health infrastructure and advancing research and innovation.

“The initiative continues to support malaria prevention and control programmes in Nigeria, a country which currently accounts for more than one quarter of the global burden of the disease.

“In honour of World Malaria Day, these partners are focused on leveraging the power of sports and media to reach Nigerian youth, through malaria-themed tournaments, creative radio, television and school-based malaria campaigns, among other activities.

The statement also quoted Mr Kevin Murphy, the President, ExxonMobil Foundation as saying “the prospect of a malaria-free world is in the hands of our youth’’.

“We are proud to support programmes that not only protect the youth of Nigeria from malaria but empower them to become the next generation of leaders in the fight against this deadly disease,” Murphy said.

ExxonMobil, one of the largest publicly traded international energy companies, uses technology and innovation to help meet the world’s growing energy needs.

ExxonMobil which holds an industry-leading inventory of resources is one of the largest refiners and marketers of petroleum products, and its chemical company is one of the largest in the world.

The ExxonMobil Foundation is the primary philanthropic arm of Exxon Mobil Corporation in the U.S.

The Foundation and corporation engage in a range of philanthropic activities that advance education, with a focus on math and science in the U.S, promote women as catalysts for economic development and combat malaria. (NAN) (www.nannews.ng)