- The Merck Foundation Annual Conference was inaugurated by the President of the Republic of Zambia, H.E. Dr. EDGAR CHAGWA LUNGU and Prof. Dr. Frank Stangenberg-Haverkamp, Chairman of the Management Board of E.Merck KG and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Merck Foundation.
- The 8th edition of “Merck Foundation Africa Asia Luminary” was co-chaired by H.E. ESTHER LUNGU, The First Lady of the Republic of Zambia and the Senator, Dr. Rasha Kelej, CEO of Merck Foundation
- African First Ladies from Angola, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ghana, Guinea Conakry, Liberia, Malawi, Mozambique and Namibia were the Luminary’s guests of honor.
- More than 75,000 participants, healthcare providers, policy makers and academics from 70 countries attended the Luminaire.
Lusaka, Zambia: The Merck Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Merck KgaA launched the 8th edition of “Merck Foundation Africa Asia Luminary” on April 27, 2021, via an online video conference. It was co-chaired by H.E. Ms. ESTHER LUNGU, The First Lady of the Republic of Zambia and the Senator, Dr. Rasha Kelej, CEO of Merck Foundation.
During his opening speech, during the inauguration of the conference, the President of Zambia, HE Dr. EDGAR CHAGWA LUNGU underlined: “I am very happy to host this important conference together with the Merck Foundation, our strategic partner. long-term. It is a great honor to inaugurate the conference alongside the First Ladies of Africa. I am sure that this conference will help us to further explore partnership opportunities and introduce new cooperation frameworks in the area of health care capacity building and define interventions to break the stigma of infertility and support the ‘education of girls’.
Prof. Dr. Frank Stangenberg-Haverkamp, Chairman of the Board of E.Merck KG and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Merck Foundation, said: “I would like to welcome and also thank our partners, African First Ladies, African Ministers and health experts from Africa, Asia, Latin America and the rest of the world to join us in realizing the Merck Foundation’s vision: “Everyone in the world should lead happy lives. and fulfilling ”, together we have achieved enormous success and we are going to continue and expand our support to do more”.
During her opening and welcoming remarks, HE Ms. ESTHER LUNGU, The First Lady of Zambia and Co-Chair of Merck Africa Asia Luminary Foundation 2021 stressed: “I am very happy to co-chair and host this important Merck Foundation conference and together to celebrate the 4th anniversary of the Merck Foundation, our long-term partner in building healthcare capacity and improving access to healthcare, information and to break the stigma associated with infertility. I am also delighted to welcome my dear sisters, the First Ladies of Africa, to this conference. Merck Foundation CEO, Senator Dr. Rasha Kelej stressed: “We welcomed the First Ladies of 13 African Countries, who are also Ambassadors of the Merck More Than a Mother Foundation, to this important conference. Together, we have worked closely over the years on a strong strategy to build healthcare capacity by providing specialized training in various specialties; and define interventions to break the stigma of infertility and support girls’ education.
I am very proud that we have so far provided more than 1,100 physicians from 42 countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America with specialized training of one, two and three years in several areas such as Oncology, Diabetes, Preventive Cardiovascular Medicine, Specialty Endocrinology, Sexual and Reproductive Medicine, Acute Medicine, Respiratory Medicine, Human Assisted Reproduction and Embryology & Fertility, to be the first in their country. In addition, we have now broadened our horizons by introducing more scholarships for young physicians in many new, underserved specialties in Africa and Asia.
The 8th edition of the Luminaire marked another important milestone: the 4th anniversary of the Merck Foundation.
As part of the Luminaire, a High Level Panel of the Merck Foundation First Ladies Initiative Committee (MFFLI) was organized, in which the 13 African First Ladies, who are Merck Foundation Ambassadors, participated. More Than a Mother.
The keynote address was delivered by H.E.Mrs. ESTHER LUNGU, The First Lady of the Republic of Zambia as host and co-chair of the conference with
H.E. Mme ANA DIAS LOURENÇO, The First Lady of the Republic of Angola H.E. Mme NEO JANE MASISI, The First Lady of the Republic of Botswana
H.E. Madame SIKA KABORE, The First Lady of Burkina Faso
H.E. Madame ANGELINE NDAYISHIMIYE, The First Lady of the Republic of Burundi
H.E. Madame BRIGITTE TOUADERA, The First Lady of the Central African Republic
H.E. Madame DENISE NYAKERU TSHISEKEDI, The First Lady of the Democratic Republic of Congo
H.E. Mme REBECCA AKUFO-ADDO, The First Lady of the Republic of Ghana
H.E. Madame DJÈNÈ CONDÉ, The First Lady of the Republic of Guinea Conakry
H.E. Mrs. CLAR MARIE WEAH, The First Lady of the Republic of Liberia
H.E. Mme MONICA CHAKWERA, The First Lady of the Republic of Malawi
H.E. Mme ISAURA FERRÃO NYUSI, The First Lady of the Republic of Mozambique
H.E. Mme MONICA GEINGOS, The First Lady of the Republic of Namibia
Day 1 of the 8th edition of Merck Foundation Africa Asia Luminary brought together over 75,000 participants, healthcare providers, policy makers, academics, researchers and media from over 70 countries in three languages English, French, and Portuguese.
On the second day of the conference, the Merck Foundation – MARS Africa Research Summit was held during which a high-level roundtable with the Ministers of Health, Science and Technology, Education, Information and Gender and Researchers MARS was held with the aim of empowering young African researchers and women researchers, advancing their research capacity and empowering them in STEM.
On the third day, a Merck Foundation Health Media Training was organized for the African and Latin American media fraternity to highlight the important role the media play in breaking the stigma around infertility, raising awareness on preventing infertility and empowering girls and women through education.
Other important scientific sessions in different medical fields also took place in parallel on days 2 and 3 of the Luminary.
Participating countries include Angola, Bangladesh, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Canada, Central African Republic, Cambodia, Chad, Côte d’Ivoire, Republic of Congo , Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, France, Gabon, Germany, Ghana, Guinea – Bissau, Guinea – Conakry, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Malaysia, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nepal, Niger, Nigeria, Peru, Philippines, Russia, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Tanzania, Thailand, Gambia, Togo, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, Uganda, United States, Vietnam, Zambia, Zimbabwe and more.
The 8th edition of Merck Foundation Africa Asia Luminary was broadcast live @Merck Foundation Facebook page and Senator, Dr. Rasha Kelej Facebook page