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‘Zinduka!’: war on malaria launched in Tanzania

Malaria is the leading cause of deaths in Tanzania. More than 290 people — the  majority of whom are children under the age of five — die every day from malaria. In other words more than 10 people die every hour. This is unacceptable because malaria is a disease which can be prevented and cured.

This was said in Dar es Salaam on 13 February by the President of Tanzania His Excellency Jakaya Kikwete when launching a malaria campaign christened “Zinduka” (which means wake up in Swahili), which Save the Children was invited to.

President Kikwete, who is also the president of the African Leaders Malaria Alliance, has declared a total war against malaria, calling on the nation to join hands in eliminating the disease. Eradicating malaria is no longer an option, he said.

Zinduka” is a campaign tailored to promote public awareness on malaria. “It is possible to ensure that we become the last generation to die from malaria. Other countries in the world have managed to eradicate malaria. Zanzibar has done so, why not Tanzania Mainland? Malaria should become history”, he said.

President Kikwete said the government is focusing on three ways to fight malaria disease: the correct use of medication, preventing people from contracting the disease by using treated mosquito nets and eradicating malaria altogether by residual spraying.

The president said the government is about to launch a programme that focuses on children under the age of five years old. The initiative will require that all children sleep under treated mosquito nets. While children under five are currently getting the treated mosquito nets for free, plans are in the final stages to enable every household to have at least two treated nets. The president urged sponsors to take the campaign to every region and district in the country.

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