President Kagame walks with US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, at the Fourth High-Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness (HLF4) in Busan, South Korea, on November 30, 2011. (State Department photo)
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced Monday that ‘Rwanda and the United States are now working toward a new kind of partnership’ – that will see Rwanda taking the lead in planning its health care needs with US funding.
“The United States will continue to provide support for our health programs, including PEPFAR, as well as programs on maternal and child health, family planning, and TB,” said Clinton at the Clinton Global Initiative in New York.
“But the Rwandan Government will do the managing, monitoring, and evaluating of these programs, and most will be run through Rwanda’s own public system.”
Clinton said ‘Rwanda’s increased ownership and capacity frees our resources so that we can focus more on a priority that they’ve identified, namely, training local healthcare workers’.
“We’ve already transferred patients receiving care through PEPFAR to clinics run by Rwandans,” said the Secretary of State on day two of the three-day conference.
The Clinton Global Initiative is the brain child of former US President Bill Clinton. President Kagame and several other global leaders were scheduled to grace the annual event.
In the midst of growing quest for national ownership for development funding, the US government also announced the establishment of a new Office of Global Health Diplomacy at the State Department. Hillary Clinton said the office will coordinate “diplomatic engagement and provide our ambassadors with the tools and information they need to have a greater impact where the real healthcare work is happening on the ground”.
Clinton also praised an initiative in Haiti that brought sewing machines to Caracol, the impoverished country’s new industrial park, so that the 800 employees of one of Korea’s largest garment manufacturers could get to work. Most of those workers are women, she said, and most have never held formal employment before.
While public-private partnerships are key to creating jobs, fostering the fundamental building blocks of struggling countries is a responsibility the wealthy need to take on, Clinton said.
“They don’t invest in public schools and public hospitals and other kinds of development internally,” Clinton said of the elite. “So, it means for leaders telling powerful people things they don’t want to hear. It means being transparent about budgets and revenues and bringing corruption to light.”