Equatorial Guinea: CAF President honoured for achievement on HIV/AIDS through football

Bata, Equatorial Guinea (PANA) - President of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) Issa Hayatou has been honoured with the prestigious 2015 Certificate of Achievement  by the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) on the occasion of the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations, hosted by Equatorial Guinea.

The special recognition was bestowed on the CAF President at a star-studded reception attended by the Presidents of FIFA, UEFA, high-ranking officials from the government, sports organisations, the private sector, and the world of football, for his sustained commitment to the AIDS response through efforts to promote the role of sport in development and advocacy for the “Protect the Goal” campaign.

The CAF media outlet quoted Djibril Diallo, Senior Adviser to the Executive Director of UNAIDS, as saying “We are proud of President Hayatou’s accomplishments since the launch of the 'Protect the Goal' campaign in Johannesburg in 2013 and pleased that his efforts are being recognised through this prestigious UNAIDS award.

“This prize is the culmination of CAF-UNAIDS joint advocacy activities. President Hayatou’s efforts have demonstrated an unflinching support to this innovative campaign from its inception.''

“We are determined to continue our support to UNAIDS in their efforts to promote this campaign across the continent,” said President Hayatou, adding  ”We will redouble our efforts to ensure that our teams and fans are committed to an Africa where AIDS is no longer a public health threat.”

The “Protect the Goal” campaign aims to raise awareness of HIV and mobilise young people to commit to HIV prevention. About 2,100 young people are infected with HIV each day.

Many young people living with HIV, who are eligible for treatment, lack access or do not know their HIV status.

Dr. Diallo, who is representing the UNAIDS Executive Director at the event, added. “UNAIDS Country Representatives of the 16 countries represented at AFCON 2015 have been working with National Football Associations, mayors and municipal leaders, and youth leaders in preparation for this tournament.

"Such activities have included briefing football players on HIV/AIDS advocacy, media events involving key football players and/or government officials, and public events”.

In Algeria, the captain of the national football team Les Fennecs signed the “Protect the Goal” campaign pledge to support UNAIDS to achieve its vision of “Getting to Zero”.

In Gabon, advocacy activities including dissemination of promotional materials in French were carried out in collaboration with the local youth network, and briefing sessions on the “Protect the Goal” campaign were held with the President of FEGAfoot, the national football association, and the Minister of Youth.

The captain of the national football team Les Panthères also signed the “Protect the Goal” campaign pledge committing players and fans to adhere to the rollout plan of the campaign.

In Guinea, the Secretary General of FEGUIFOOT, the national football federation, adhered to the “Protect the Goal” campaign by signing a pledge fostering synergies between the AIDS and Ebola responses.

UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé and the CAF President signed a Memorandum of Understanding on 19 Jan., 2013, on the sidelines of the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations in Johannesburg, South Africa.

The MoU aims to leverage the popularity of football to advance HIV prevention.
-0- PANA VAO/SEG 9Feb2015

09 Fevereiro 2015 07:42:17

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