SAIU, Makerere University fundraise for NCD Symposium

By Ambrose Gahene and Joseph m. Buwule
A total of shs 662 million was pledged during a fundraising dinner, for Makerere University College of Health Sciences {MakCHS} First International Non-Communicable Diseases {INCDs} Symposium, slated to take place from February 12-15 2018, at Speke Resort Munyonyo . The fundraising drive took place at Pearl of Africa Hotel, Kampala last Tuesday. Makerere University College of Health Sciences is in partnership with St. Augustine International University {SAIU}, to carry out research on NCDs.
While presiding over the fundraising drive as Chief Guest, Minister of State for International Affairs Henry Okello Oryiem contributed shs 10 million towards the NCDs research symposium and promised to mobilize more funds from health partners and friends. He said the Chinese Ambassador to Uganda has pledged to host the symposium.
 In addition, Minister Oryem said Non Communicable diseases affect both the well to do and poor members in society. He called upon Ugandans to undertake regular medical tests, to avoid seeking medication when it’s too late.  “NCDs kill more than malaria and HIV, which is why it’s the responsibility of every one to find a remedy to this health hazard”, said Minister Oryem. He advised Ugandans to engage in physical exercises, avoid stress and eat balanced diets, to avoid contracting NCDs.
H.H King Ceasor Mulenga is flanked by Minister Henry Okello Oryem

Hon. Oryem commended the brains behind the 1st International Non Communicable Diseases Symposium; saying that Uganda has yarned for an awareness campaign on Non Communicable Diseases. “We live in a terrible situation without knowledge on NCDs. The percentage of victims of NCDs in Uganda is very high, including me. This drive is a formidable one and I believe we are going to achieve the intended goals,” he said.

H.H King Ceasor Mulenga addressing participants at the fundraising dinner for Makerere University College of Health Sciences.

On his part, SAIU Chairman and Honorary Consular General of Vietnam to Uganda King Ceasor Mulenga contributed shs 100 milion towards the hosting of the symposium and another shs 50 million yearly, for MakCHS Research program, for a period of 10 years; totaling to shs 600 million.

H.H Mulenga reiterated the need for Ugandans to invest heavily in medical research because NCDs know no rich, poor, region, tribe or social status. “NCDs are a threat to all the human society, which is why we should step up awareness campaigns”, he said. He in addition called upon Ugandans of all ages to carry out NCDs early Screening at health centres. “It’s vital to make it a rule for early NCDs screening in Schools and families”, he added.
MD of Baroda Ashwini Kumar is flanked by H.H King Ceasor Mulenga

He also said NCDs prevention goes hand in hand with nutrition. “We at SAIU are marketing CHIA seeds, which are 8 times more omega 3 than salmon, more importantly; Chia doesn’t contain cholesterol and toxic heavy metal components as fish and other marine or animal products. Chia seed contains 5 times more calcium than milk”, he added.

He enumerated negative effects of NCDs on families to include; psychological costs, brought about by death of loved ones, poverty brought about by high cost of NCDs medication and bringing about national underdevelopment due to lose of energetic youth.
MakCHS Principal Dr Charles Ibingira said NCDs account for 80 per cent in developing countries. “MakCHS contributes to 80 per cent of research to fight against HIV, through safe male circumcision and meningitis management”, he said. He enumerated the role of research to include; helping in awareness, mapping of NCDs prevalence, getting home grown solutions, promotion of proper nutrition and environment protection among others.
Makerere University Vice Chancellor Barnabas Nawangwe was represented at the fundraising by Makerere University Deputy Vice Chancellor Finance and Administration; William Bazayo, who pledged shs 50 million, towards the symposium. He said Makerere University will in addition mobilize funds for research from donors and other stakeholders. He also urged Ugandans to embrace the development of a research fund geared towards collecting data aimed at finding lasting solutions on Non Communicable Diseases.“We discovered that little research has been done on NCDs. Africans are depending on research done by the western world. We need to support our own research. Makerere University might not be endowed with funds but it is endowed with human capacity to do research. Therefore if we raise funds, I am sure the University together with other partners can carry out research on the NCDs,” said Prof. Bazeyo.
Minister Okello Oryem addressing participants during the fundraising dinner for MUK College of Health Sciences
MakCHS Principal Prof. Charles Ibingira during the fundraising dinner for MUK College of Health Sciences
MUK Deputy Vice Chancellor William Bazayo during the fundraising dinner for MUK College of Health Sciences











Pepsi Cola Chairman Amos Nzei also promised to mobilize more fund for local NCDs research and pledged shs 10 million towards the symposium.  Others who pledged contributions towards the symposium included; Stanbic Bank represented by Elizabeth Kasekende, shs 200 millon, DfCU Bank; shs 10 million,  Managing Director; Uganda Health Marketing Group Joyce Tamale; shs 1 million and SAIU staff, who each pledged to contribute shs 100

thousand among others.

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