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Marketing destination Zim high on the agenda as Zimbabwe readies for ICASA 2023

Story by Abigirl Tembo, Health Editor

MORE than 5 000 international delegates are expected to attend the 22nd edition of the International Conference on AIDS and STIs (ICASA) scheduled for December in Victoria Falls and Harare, with marketing Destination Zimbabwe high on the agenda.

Organisers of the 22nd edition of the International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa (ICASA) which will take place from the 4th to the 9th of December this year say the country is ready to host the prestigious event, with the high-level meetings which will take place on the 2nd of December in the resort town of Victoria Falls.

“The main programme for ICASA is from the 4th to the 9th of December 2022 but we have high-level meetings which will happen in Victoria Falls on the 2nd of December so there are mainly three events which will happen there the first one is a high-level meeting of the first ladies of Africa where they will discuss ending HIV in Children then the second meeting is that which will involve the ministry of youth where issues of substance abuse, depression and mental health will be discussed amongst youth,” said National Aids Council chief executive officer, Dr Bernard Madzima.

“The third high-level meeting set for Victoria Falls is for African Ministers of Finance where they will discuss domestic financing and sustainability for the HIV programme. Then from the 4th of December, the main ICASA will happen where high-level speakers and experts in various fields including leadership will address guests.”

An inter-ministerial committee comprising various ministries, including Health and Child Care, Youth, Sport, Arts and Culture as well as Finance and Economic Development, chaired by Deputy Chief Secretary Reverend Paul Damasane, has since been set up.

“We want ICASA to be beyond the issues of health, we want it to also be beneficial to the country in terms of marketing the country. We also want to market the city of Victoria Falls,” said Dr Madzima.

This is the second time Zimbabwe is hosting ICASA after hosting the 2015 event which attracted over 5 400 delegates in Harare.

Zimbabwe’s selection as the host was a result of a rigorous evaluation process of two pre-selected countries out of five country bids.

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