Delivered by Aleksey Lakhov, Europe, on behalf of the NGO Delegation
Thank you Chair,
I speak on behalf of the NGO Delegation.
Today, the entire NGO Delegation is wearing T-shirts with the colors of the flag of Ukraine. We stand in solidarity with our peers and the people of Ukraine during these trying times and demand an immediate cessation of the hostilities.
Military conflicts, COVID-19 pandemic and other humanitarian crises are reflected throughout the 2016-2021 UBRAF Performance Reports. But they are not the only reasons behind some critical indicators not having been met. In fact, it’s quite a few Member States that should be held accountable for HIV response lagging behind.
It is those Member States that criminalize drug use, sex work, same sex relationships, transgender people and other ways to be ourselves. It is those Member States that maintain a deafening silence during PCB meetings when it comes to discussing key populations. It is those Member States that invest billions in their colonial, imperialistic ambitions instead of providing 10 times less for critical HIV services.
Meanwhile, donors keep asking us to make our programs specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and timely. To be SMART, in short. But how smart is it when people living with HIV, people who use drugs, gay men and other men who have sex with men, sex workers, transgender people and other communities are not involved in the decision-making processes on their own fate? How smart is it when you have voluntary male circumcision but do not scale-up PrEP interventions? How smart is it when incarceration is preferred to harm reduction?
At the 49th PCB meeting, we said that a fully funded UBRAF was a prerequisite for success in 2022. To our deep regret, what we are witnessing is a shortfall of at least 30 million US dollars in the core funding for this year alone, in part – because of currency fluctuations. People literally keep dying because of exchange rates!
With the current level of investment and commitment on behalf of many Member States, we won’t be able to end the AIDS epidemic not by 2025, not by 2030 – not even by 2050.
Tags: 50th PCB Meeting