Global Fund Observer

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The GFO editorial on what you can expect from this second Special post-Global Fund Board Edition of the Global Fund Observer.


Among the several background papers for information provided to the 47th Board meeting held on 10-12 May 2022 was the annual update on Community, Rights and Gender. While members appreciated the progress that had been made, they also felt that the Community, Rights and Gender portfolio does not seem to be prioritized in a manner that reflects its critical role in implementing the Global Fund’s current Strategy, programs and funding mechanisms. In particular, key performance indicator targets have not been met.


At the 47th Board meeting held on 10-12 May 2022 the Global Fund Secretariat updated the Board on the ongoing process of developing the new Key Performance Indicators framework. Technical consultations have been going on for almost a year now, involving more than 300 external experts. The new framework includes three layers of indicators: impact, strategy outcome and financial outcomes. In their statement, the constituencies commended the Secretariat for its efforts but highlighted some key areas for improvement.


During the 47th session of the Global Fund’s Governing Board, the Head of Risk Management presented his report for the year 2021. Despite challenges, 2021 should be regarded as a success; nevertheless, while risks at an aggregated level are expected to decrease over the medium term, the trajectory will be volatile.


The OIG Report to the Global Fund Board meeting last week was surprisingly upbeat, despite the COVID-19 pandemic. Its overall conclusion was that no material weaknesses were noted in governance, risk management or control processes which would compromise the overall achievement of the Global Fund’s objectives. All OIG activities were conducted in accordance with its charter and its workplan was delivered as planned. However, stakeholders bemoaned the outstanding Agreed Management Actions and felt that the pandemic could not be blamed for everything that does not go according to plan.


At the 47th Board meeting that concluded last week, there was widespread appreciation for the work of the outgoing Ethics Officer, Nick Jackson. Many praised the effort that the Secretariat is making with respect to ethics and integrity, the completion of the development of frameworks for key topics such as abuse of power and the fight against corruption, further clarifying responsibilities and accountabilities for the wider range of ethical risks and updating and completing codes of conduct.


The Secretariat updated the Global Fund Board on the organization’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic during a virtual pre-Board session held on 5 May 2022. Specifically, the Board was informed about how the Global Fund is keeping staff safe, protecting its core mandate, the support it is providing to countries to respond to the pandemic, and the organization’s role in the global COVID-19 response.


The Annual Consultative Meeting of the Global Fund’s African Constituency Bureau is the opportunity to bring together the 46 countries of the African constituencies to exchange views on the policy issues which are the topics for discussion on the agenda for the Global Fund Board Meeting. This year is special. The African Constituency Bureau is celebrating its fifth anniversary with an opportunity to reflect on its successes and achievements and the way forward.


At last week’s Global Fund 47th Board Meeting, delegates were updated on the Secretariat’s resource mobilization efforts and plans for the Seventh Replenishment. A lot has been achieved in a very short space of time. However, resource mobilization and advocacy is taking place in a complex international environment and there are many competing demands on overseas development aid.