As the Global Fund activities for the new year gear up, the African Constituency Bureau (ACB) wishes to spotlight some successes achieved by African constituencies in the Global Fund governance. These successes were made possible because Country Coordination Mechanisms (CCMs) representatives, Principal Recipients (PRs), and partners trusted ACB by providing information and sharing knowledge with the organization. Our representatives spoke convincingly on our behalf. And a stronger ACB supported those processes.
To our representatives to the Global Fund Board and committees, in-country stakeholders, and partners, thank you!
Below, we highlight just a few successes emanating from the Board and committees in 2022. These accomplishments sometimes build on the work of representatives in previous years and cycles.
The Covid-19 Response Mechanism (C19RM) extension in the Audit and Finance Committee (AFC)
The Secretariat submission for the AFC in March 2022 focused only on low absorption and the need for portfolio optimization. The African Constituencies indicated that part of the low absorption was due to pressure on the Global supply chains that Africa could not solve alone. Another part was due to the grant design and the importance of funds allocated to COVID-19 tests (both were decisions from the Secretariat). We requested that the Global Fund extends the period of utilization of the C19RM resources. This decision was approved by the Global Fund Board in November 2022.
Investments in Resilient and Sustainable Systems for Health (RSSH) and focus on fragile countries in the Strategy Committee (SC).
Investments in RSSH were discussed during strategy development in 2021. Following the strategy adoption, the Global Fund Board and Committees made a slew of decisions including eligibility criteria and global disease split. During these discussions, our representatives insisted on RSSH but obtained few concrete decisions. In 2022, our representatives, supported by allies, declined support to the allocation methodology decision during the 18th Strategy Committee of March 2022 and the May Board meeting, thus sending a clear signal of the importance of health systems in Africa. (The allocation methodology focused only on HIV, TB, and malaria). While the decision passed nonetheless, our voices were finally heard. An additional RSSH budget line was introduced in the catalytic investments. This line survived the cuts due to a lower replenishment level. The allocation letters received by our countries stressed the importance and the possibility of investment in RSSH from the main disease allocation.
Challenging Operating Environment
Our constituencies also championed Challenging Operating Environment countries as 13 out of the 29 COE countries are in our constituencies. We obtained increased support from the Secretariat, the committees, and the Board in these countries.
As ACB, it is our duty and privilege to support the appropriate representation of over 1 billion children, women, and men in our constituencies. We trust our collective work will be even more fruitful in 2023.