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African NGO Sets 20-million-dollar Goal to Fight Disease

The non-governmental organisation Friends Africa said Wednesday it is setting a goal to raise 20 million dollars (15 million euros) to combat AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria, ravaging the continent, a spokesman said on Wednesday.

"We are raising 20 million dollars in the next one year to combat these diseases," Nigerian-born Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede, chairman of Friends Africa, said in a statement.

Aig-Imoukhuede, who is also the managing director of a local bank, said the organisation will mobilise support for the funding from countries, corporations and wealthy individuals in and outside Africa.

He said the body has approached Nigeria to back the project, adding that the sum of 10 million dollars was pledged by the regime of former president Olusegun Obasanjo before leaving office last month. He said the organisation will meet in Johannesburg on Saturday to devise strategies to meet its financial goal.

Friends Africa was established in 2006 as a private sector initiative to raise funds for the continent in the fight against the diseases that have claimed millions of lives in the world's poorest continent.


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