It is with outmost pleasure that I invite you to the 12th “Stop Cervical Breast and Prostate Cancer in Africa” Conference which my country, Lesotho is privileged to host. This conference which is organised in partnership with the Princess Nikky Breast Cancer Foundation will take place from 22nd – 25th July 2018 at ‘Manthabiseng Convention Center in Maseru – Lesotho. Expected are Speakers of African parliaments, Heads of State and Government, African First Ladies, Speakers of African Parliaments, Ministers, leaders of cancer research institutions and hospitals, scientists, heads of UN agencies, other International Organisations, civil society and private sector representatives as well as cancer survivors from all corners of the world will gather in Maseru to deliberate on the strategies to Stop Cervical, Breast and Prostate Cancer in Africa.
Cancers are causing more than 8million deaths annually it kills more people than HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria combined. Recognising that cancer is no longer only the problem of the developed world; African countries need to invest significantly in making cancer screening, diagnosis and treatment facilities and services available for their population. Most importantly we need to work relentlessly towards creating awareness among our people so that the effort to provide adequate medical services is backed with effective preventive measures as well as early diagnosis and treatment which factors significantly in reducing the number of deaths caused by cancer.
My country took the challenges posed by the growing burden of cancer very seriously and started taking concrete measures under a harmonised national framework led by Ministry of Health. The establishment of the National Cancer Control Steering Committee, the UP COMING launch of our National Cancer Control Plan as well as our achievement in making cervical cancer screening and treatment services available in all health centres in the country are among the concrete steps we have taken. We are also in the process of establishing National Cancer treatment Centre in Maseru.
This conference is a platform where a wider range of stakeholders actively involved in cancer prevention and control will come together to reflect on the success Africa has achieved and the challenges faced in the prevention and control of cervical, breast and prostate cancer over the past decade. In addition to showcasing and providing updates on the latest developments made in cancer prevention and control worldwide the conference is also a unique opportunity of experience and knowledge exchange for leaders, professionals, policymakers, researchers and all stakeholders operating in the field.
Once again, I cordially invite you to take part in this important gathering which is also a celebration of the important steps that Africa is taking to stop cancer in the African continent. Please join the effort of galvanising global support and funding for cervical, breast and prostate cancer prevention and control in Africa. By doing so, you will be making a meaningful contribution to saving lives and reviving the hopes of millions of women, men and children who are in a daunting battle with this disease.
I hope to see you this July in Maseru. And of course, I warmly invite you to explore my country, the Kingdom in the Sky also known as the Switzerland of Africa and enjoy the hospitality of Basotho here in the Mountain Kingdom.