Fiji’s COVID-19 recovery rate is at 78% and this has successfully broken the chain of transmission of the virus.

This was highlighted by Minister for Health Dr.Ifereimi Waqainabete as he addressed the 73rd Session of the World Health Assembly via the virtual de minimis platform.

Dr Waqainabete says that the COVID-19 pandemic was an extraordinary event for all humanity and has brought suffering to countless families and communities across the globe.

He also acknowledged the strong and decisive leadership of Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and the Fijian government which enabled Fiji’s effective containment of the pandemic.

The Health Minister stressed that the World Health Organisation including the global leaders should focus not only on the pandemic but more so on the other issues confronting the global community such as the impact of climate change.

The 73rd session of the WHA was officially opened by the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres where he stressed to world leaders that despite the call for solidarity, very little has been achieved and that COVID-19 was a wake-up call for all, saying that if the world cannot address this virus, the economy can never recover.

Guterres also called upon all leaders to take responsibility to provide a stronger and resilient society and have human rights in all that they do, including the continuous battle and commitment to address the climate risks among the vulnerable community.

Other notable leaders including President Xi Jinping of China, President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa, President Emmanuel Macron of France, Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, Prime Minister Mia Mottley of Barbados and President Moon Jae-in of South Korea also addressed the floor during the opening segment and impressed on the urgent need for global solidarity now than ever before.

The main agenda for this virtual WHO Session this year firstly is to coordinate a global response amongst Health and Political leaders to address the COVID-19 pandemic and second, to ensure that the governance mechanism of the organization continues through the appointment of new Executive Board members including the review and approval of the proposed program budget.