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Global Fund Suspends Grants in Uganda

24 August 2005

Action Taken To Ensure That Programs Fully Benefit the People of Uganda

The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria has temporarily suspended all of its five grants to Uganda and asked the Ugandan Ministry of Finance to put in place a new structure that will ensure effective management of the grants.

The Global Fund’s decision was based on a review undertaken by PricewaterhouseCoopers of one of the five grants, which revealed evidence of serious mismanagement by the Project Management Unit (PMU) in the Ministry of Health. To date, the PMU has been responsible for overseeing the implementation of Global Fund programs in Uganda. While the review centered on the Round 1 HIV/AIDS grant, the same PMU manages all five grants, and to minimize risk all five have been temporarily suspended.

The other grants include a second grant for HIV/AIDS, two grants to combat malaria, and one grant targeting tuberculosis. These grants are worth a total of US$ 201 million over two years, of which US$ 45.4 million has been disbursed to date.

The Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development, the Principal Recipient for the five grants, has been requested to come up with a plan by the end of October for restructured implementation arrangements for all grant-funded programs. These arrangements will have to include the disbandment of the PMU.

In the interim period, the Global Fund will work with the Principal Recipient to identify the elements of funded programs involving life-saving treatment to ensure that funding continues to reach those activities. All necessary measures will be taken to ensure that life-saving treatment as well as prevention activities such as condom procurement and distribution financed by the Global Fund will not be disrupted during this period. A team from the Global Fund is ready to travel to Uganda to assist the Principal Recipient in this task.

The Global Fund remains committed to the support of efforts to combat the three diseases in Uganda and will provide all possible support to enable the quick resumption of full grant-funded activities in Uganda.

Worldwide, Global Fund grants enable countries to scale up their fight against the three diseases in a sustainable way by strengthening health systems and paying for drugs, diagnostics, mosquito nets and other commodities.

The Global Fund has allocated US$ 3.7 billion to 316 programs in 127 countries. Of the money committed, 56 percent goes to fighting HIV/AIDS, while 13 percent goes to fighting TB and 31 percent to malaria. Sixty percent is spent in sub-Saharan Africa. A total of US$ 1.4 billion has been disbursed to programs so far.

Three years after its creation, the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria is proving to be a key engine behind the scale-up of the fight against the three pandemics worldwide. Despite an average age of only 15 months, Global Fund-financed programs now support 220,000 people on AIDS treatment and have provided treatment for 600,000 patients with TB and 1.1 million patients with malaria.

The Global Fund currently contributes a fifth of all external resources worldwide to fight HIV/AIDS, two-thirds of external resources for TB control and well over half of external resources to roll back malaria.

An analysis of the Global Fund’s grant portfolio shows that of the 74 grants that have reached 18 months of age, 80 percent have met or exceeded targets and that taken as a whole, the 74 grants have exceed all targets except those for the distribution of insecticide-treated bed nets.

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