The Duke of Sussex has narrated a new video to mark World Aids Day where he compared the Covid vaccine rollout to global failures of dealing with the Aids and HIV epidemic
The Duke of Sussex has narrated a new video to mark World Aids Day.
In the new video, Prince Harry highlights the parallels between the struggles for access to HIV medicines and inequality surrounding the rollout of the Covid vaccines and boosters.
He co-voices the footage with UNAIDS executive director Winnie Byanyima.
The video is a part of a project for The People’s Vaccine Alliance as part of a World Health Organisation and UNAIDS event.
Harry said: “There are striking parallels between Covid-19 and another deadly pandemic. One that emerged 40 years ago – HIV.”
The video also features clips of Prince Harry’s mother, Diana, Princess of Wales, meeting Aids patients.
The Duke of Sussex added: “This is a story about how corporate greed and political failure have prolonged both pandemics and what we can do to stop it.
“By ending vaccine monopolies and sharing technology, companies in the developing world can start producing Covid vaccines too…Break the monopolies…deliver a People’s Vaccine.”
Alongside the video, Prince Harry also wrote a letter to WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and Ms Byanyima.
In it he wrote how “deeply grateful” his mother, who was known for helping to break stigma around HIV and Aids, would have been for their achievements.
The letter was read out by the WHO’s director of global HIV, hepatitis and STIs programmes Dr Meg Doherty at the event.
Harry wrote: “On this World Aids Day we recognise the 40 years that have shaped life for many.
“We honour those whose lives have been cut short and reaffirm our commitment to a scientific community that has worked tirelessly against this disease.
“My mother would be deeply grateful for everything you stand for and have accomplished. We all share that gratitude, so thank you.”
In sharp comparison he called the rollout of the Covid vaccine globally a “spectacular failure”.
The Prince called vaccinating the world a test of “our moral character” and said the world was failing.
He said: “Similar to the Aids crisis, we’ve yet again revealed over the past year that the value of life depends on whether you were born and/or live in a rich nation, or a developing country.
“Now more than ever, the voiceless majority of the world needs to be heard and the onus is on our leaders to end this pandemic.”
He warned that repeating failures that surrounded and worsened the Aids epidemic would be a “betrayal of the next generation”.
He called on world leaders to learn lessons from the past “where millions died unnecessarily” due to unequal access to treatment.
The Mirror’s newsletter brings you the latest news, exciting showbiz and TV stories, sport updates and essential political information.
The newsletter is emailed out first thing every morning, at 12noon and every evening.
Never miss a moment by signing up to our newsletter here.
He said: “Are we really comfortable repeating the failures of the past? Everything I’ve learnt, from the youth of Sentebale, tells me not.
“They see how repeating these mistakes is destructive and self-defeating, it is a betrayal of the next generation.
“Let’s spend today celebrating and building on the work of champions who turned what was once a death sentence into a manageable condition.
“Let’s spend tomorrow continuing our efforts to save lives and make a difference.