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Anti-Malaria pledges come fast on “Idol” fundraiser

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r.jpg       He hardly fits the bill as an American Idol, but British Prime Minister Gordon Brown won fans for an extraordinary pledge to buy 20 million anti-malarial nets for use in Africa and other parts of the developing world.

Brown made the commitment in a video-taped appearance on Wednesday’s “American Idol” charity TV special “Idol Gives Back” which brings celebrities, charities and viewers together in a bid to raise tens of millions of dollars for children’s charities in Africa and the United States.

Oil company Exxon Mobil, one of the “Idol” corporate sponsors, separately announced a $10 million donation to the fund raiser to be spent on anti-malarial efforts in Africa.

Brown’s pledge on behalf of the British government represents about one-sixth of the 120 million life-saving mosquito nets that experts says are needed to protect every child and family around the world from contracting the disease.

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