House Emphasizes the Urgency of Multilateralism in Fighting COVID-19
Chairperson and a Vice Chairperson of the House Committee for Inter-Parliamentary Cooperation Fadli Zon and Mardani Ali Sera attend virtual conference held by ‘Asia-Pacific Parliamentarian Forum on Global Health’ (APPFGH), at Parliament Compound, Senayan, Jakarta, Monday (28/9/2020). Photo: Arief/Man
Chairperson of the Committee for Inter-Parliamentary Cooperation (BKSAP) of the Indonesian House of Representatives Fadli Zon emphasized the urgency of multilateral cooperation through ‘Universal Health Coverage’ (UHC) amid COVID-19 pandemic. Zon stated that the COVID-19 pandemic strongly alarmed us on the urgency to meet UHC as a part of our shared commitment for the implementation of 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development including the achievement of UHC by 2030 to build a healthier world for all. Last year, the world leaders also elevated their commitment on UHC.
Zon made this statement after he attended a virtual conference held by ‘Asia-Pacific Parliamentarian Forum on Global Health’ (APPFGH), on Monday (28/9/2020) at BKSAP Leaders’ office, parliament compound, Senayan, Jakarta. The conference raised the theme “Investing in Universal Health Coverage for the Future”. A Vice Chairperson of BKSAP Mardani Ali Sera also attended the conference.
“UHC has become a political decision. Parliament will surely be at the forefront in the effort to achieve UHC through its political decisions. COVID-19 pandemic is the right momentum to focus more on investing in health. Now, it is the right time for us to review our plan to realize UHC. Giving a priority to save lives and maintain health amid the pandemic is the first step to be strongly committed to UHC,” said Zon.
The politician of the Great Indonesian Movement Party (Gerindra) went on to say that the Indonesian House views the on-going pandemic as a test how far we have committed to implement UHC and how strong our respective national health resilience is. In Indonesia, home to nearly 270 million people, the accomplishment of UHC may face tough challenges. The situation will be harder due to COVID-19 outbreak. However, the pandemic has implicitly sent ‘a clear message’ for improvement needed for our Health Care and Social Security Agency (BPJS Kesehatan) that handles UHC program in Indonesia.
On the other hand, the Indonesian House also reaffirmed the urgency of regional and global cooperation in handling the pandemic, including the availability of COVID-19 vaccine. “Now, multilateral cooperation is the urgent need. World Health Organization (WHO) should play a pivotal role in organizing the management of a global and regional concerted effort in support of containing the outbreak. It also must ensure that no country left behind. We must bear responsibility as the united people of the earth through joint-actions including the availability of the future COVID-19 vaccine for all,” said Zon.
Meanwhile, Vice Chairperson of BKSAP, Dr. Mardani Ali Sera raised the issue of the role of WHO in overcoming gaps among countries related to health services in handling the COVID-19 pandemic. The politician of the Prosperous Justice Party (PKS) also called on WHO to be more proactive in encouraging multilateral cooperation to fight the COVID-19 pandemic. The conference held by the parliamentary forum of Asia Pacific countries and WHO was attended by 37 participants and discussed the urgency of UHC amid the COVID-19 pandemic.