The Forum of African First Ladies against Breast, Cervical and Prostate Cancer (SCCA) has chosen Kenya to host the 9th Conference next year.
Co-founder and Director General of Nikky Breast & Cervical Cancer Foundation, Princess Nikky Onyeri made the announcement at the close of the 8th Cancer Conference in Windhoek. Five countries had bid to host the conference.
Wild cheers from participants met the announcement as First Lady Margaret Kenyatta was decorated as the next SCCA conference host.
The First Lady accepted the hosting rights on behalf of the Government and the people of Kenya saying it is an honor to host the SCCA Conference in Nairobi from Sunday 19th –Wednesday 22nd July, 2015.
The conference is an annual event hosted by the African Countries on rotational basis and under the patronage of the respective First Ladies of the hosting country.
In her confirmation speech, the First Lady said the hosting right will be a collaborative initiative by the Government of Kenya through the Office of the First Lady in conjunction with the Ministry of Health, Princess Nikky Breast & Cervical Cancer Foundation and other key stakeholders.
She assured that Kenya will abide by all the laid down conditions expected of a hosting nation saying the 9th SCCA will focus on Cervical, Breast and Prostate Cancers.
The First Lady said, “We strongly believe that there is need to create awareness and utilize existing opportunities for reduce the burden and deaths from Breast, Cervical and Prostate cancers which are the biggest killers in Africa today”.
She added that leaders’ participation in advocating for more effective ways of communication and social mobilization efforts for cancer prevention and control activities will alleviate the suffering of Kenyans and Africans in general.
The First Lady said Kenya is a globally recognized hub for NGO’s and UN organizations’ for the whole of East Africa and has the capacity for hosting large scale international delegations.
Meanwhile, the First Ladies signed the Windhoek declaration committing them to stop the spread of cancer in their respective countries.
In the Windhoek Declaration, the 18 First Ladies pledged to intensify advocacy for adequate human, technical and financial resources to achieve universal access to Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccinations, treatment and care for cancers.
The First Ladies affirmed their commitment to work with religious, traditional and community leaders as well as civil society organizations and the media to promote awareness and disseminate accurate health information.
“We will redouble our efforts to mitigate misconceptions and stigma attached to cancer and integrate cervical, breast and prostate cancers, HIV/AIDS and maternal and child health programmes,” said the First Ladies in the declaration.
The Forum of African First Ladies against Breast, Cervical and Prostate Cancer initiated by Princess Nikky Onyeri was established in 2007 with 15 African First Ladies and has continued to create awareness about cancer in the continent.
Seven more conferences from 2008 up to 2014 were hosted by Uganda, South Africa, Ghana, Ethiopia, Nigeria, Zambia, Mozambique and currently Namibia respectively.