Wife of the senate president, Mrs Toyin Ojora Saraki, Founder-President of the Wellbeing Foundation Africa (WBFA), has been named as “Health-for-All Champion” and one of four women making waves in global health by Devex, the international development media platform and social enterprise.
Upon receiving the accolade, Mrs Saraki commented: *“It is time that we open our eyes to the critical role that universal health coverage can play in drastically improving health outcomes as well as reducing poverty, driving economic growth and promoting gender equality.”*
*“Every year, roughly 100 million people around the world are pushed into poverty due to colossal health costs, while only 1 in 5 have social security protection that will cover lost wages in the event of an illness.”*
*“We must act to ensure that every person – rich or poor, old or young, living in urban or rural areas – has access to effective, timely and quality healthcare.”*
*“I advocate for legislation and investment to make UHC a reality, and I am delighted that some recent progress has been made – the Nigerian Senate’s adoption of the one percent Consolidated Revenue Fund (CRF) for the Basic Health Care Provision Fund (BHCPF), is a ground-breaking example.”*
*“We do, however, need to consolidate and build upon these achievements as a matter of urgency. As a Health-for-All Champion, I will advocate for the benefits of UHC all over the world – but always challenge innovators, partners, experts and legislators to prioritise Nigeria, with its burgeoning population and health challenges.”*
Mrs Saraki is a special advisor to the Independent Advisory Group (IAG) of WHO AFRO, the World Health Organization’s presence in Africa, and the wife of the Senate President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.