BEIJING – Kenya’s new ambassador to China Willy Bett started his tour of duty by meeting high-level United Nations officials in Beijing.
Ambassador Bett was on February 1 welcomed by UN Resident Coordinator Siddharth Chatterjee, who briefed him on the UN Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework (2021-2025) in China as well as UN Reforms.
“I also took the opportunity to applaud the leadership of H.E President Ruto William Ruto for convening the African Climate Summit in September 2023, and the historic Nairobi Declaration that makes a strong push for accelerated climate action and financing mechanisms,” Chatterjee said.
Bett was accompanied by his deputy, Ambassador Lynette Mwende.
Ambassador Bett, who presented his credentials last Tuesday, also met Ama Sande, UNICEF Representative – China at the embassy and had a wide-ranging discussion on Africa’s development as well as Kenya-China relations.
“I look forward to strengthening our ongoing south-south initiatives on child health and development,” Sande, who is also a Kenyan, said.
Additionally, Bett held talks with United Nations Programme on HIV and AIDS Director China Office Erasmus Morah on collaborations with African Ambassadors Group to end AIDS, local production of medicines and medical devices in Africa.
“We salute Kenya’s championing role as Chair of UNAIDS Programme Coordinating Board 2024,” UNAIDS said.
Kenya was elected Chair of the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS for 2024 in December last year during the 53rd UNAIDS programme Coordinating Board held in Geneva, Switzerland.
The PCB, which comprises 22 member states, acts as the governing body on all programmatic issues concerning policy, strategy, finance, monitoring and evaluation of UNAIDS.
Heath Cabinet Secretary Susan Nachumicha said the position puts Kenya in the driver’s seat on important decision-making roles at local and international levels due to its capacity to respond to HIV-AIDS.
The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV and AIDS is the main advocate for accelerated, comprehensive and coordinated global action on the HIV/AIDS pandemic.
The programme brings together the efforts and resources of 11 UN system organizations to unite the world against AIDS.
The participating organizations include the World Health Organisation (WHO); the United Nations Populations Fund (UNFPA); United Nations Development Programme (UNDP); United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO); United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF); World Bank, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) among others.