Margaret also urged world leaders to provide the necessary political goodwill for women and children to access equal opportunities.

Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta (left) and First Lady Margaret Kenyatta
Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta (left) and First Lady Margaret Kenyatta

“Investing in women and children is a smart foundation for sustainable development,” said she in Nanyuki, central Kenya during the Global Financing Facility (GFF) in support of women and children.

Launched at the Third International Financing for Development Conference in July, GFF is a financing model that unites resources from countries, international donors and the private sector to accelerate advancements in the health of women and children.

She said it is through political goodwill, partnerships and effective financing mechanisms, that women would be able to access opportunities to enable them be self-reliant.

Margaret said new targets under the SDGs may only be achievable when leaders in developing countries provide the necessary support.

Most developing countries failed to attain the goals of the Millennium Development Goals, she added.
The First Lady said the facility has come at an opportune time for Kenya when the country is accelerating efforts aimed at improving maternal and child health outcomes.

She said measures being undertaken would enable Kenya to reap the full benefits of its demographic diversity and divide.

“At this year’s UN General Assembly, high level political commitment was demonstrated by heads of state and governments during the Secretary General’s launch of the Global strategy for women’s, children’s and adolescents’ health,” she said.

In Kenya, Margaret said the government with its partners is committed to ensuring that “no woman dies while giving life” and that “all Kenyan children would survive their childhood.”

She said the government introduced free maternal health care at all public facilities and eliminated all user fee for primary healthcare services.

To complement government efforts, Margaret launched “The Beyond Zero” campaign as a platform for collective action by public, the private sector, partners and philanthropists committed to reducing preventable maternal and child deaths.

World Bank Senior Director Timothy Evans expressed his gratitude to the First Lady for her leadership in the improvement of maternal and child health saying her personal commitment in ending preventable maternal and newborn mortality is inspiring to many.

He said GFF is an initiative that brings partners together to provide smart, scaled and sustainable financing for the Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn, Child and Adolescent Health.

“The GFF has the potential to build a new pathway for sustainable financing for development, and we must recognize that the commitment of countries to allocate their own domestic resources is essential to this endeavor,” he said. Enditem

Source: Xinhua

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