Rwanda reduced New HIV/AIDS infection to 83 percent by the end of 2018 after employing various strategies in prevention and treatment.
This was emphasized by the First Lady of Rwanda Mrs Jeannette Kagame on December 2, 2019 while officially opening the International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa (ICASA). She embarked on this during an extra session that gathered various first ladies of African countries who are members of Organisation of African First Ladies for Development (OAFLAD) that advocates for prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS.
Mrs Kagame said that the decrease was accelerated by various projects to help youth get informed of how to prevent and treat the disease.
“Our projects about Sexual and Reproductive Health helped young boys and girls to get informed of where they can easily access to healthcare and other services that are youth-friendly. That is what caused the decrease of new HIV/AIDS infection among youth.” She said.
“it also accelerated the fight against AIDS and other Sexual Transmitted Illnesses in the country and on the whole African region in general. New infections reduced to 83 percent by the end of 2018 while related mortality decreased to 82 percent.
She highlighted that such discussions help them to do self-assessment and evaluate existing challenges attached to gender equality that delay the development of Africa in preventing AIDS among its Population. .
Mrs Antoinette Sassou Ngwesso, the first lady of His Excellency President of Kongo Brazaville and Chairperson of OAFLAD said that the discussions they are holding enable them to embark on their role in fighting against AIDS.
“This high level summit helps us to embark on the role of the First Ladies of African countries in combating HIV/AIDS in our respective countries, in the region and worldwide. It is also an opportunity to learn from the challenges, key guideline information as well as needed efforts to end AIDS by 2030.
As per conclusion of ICASA 2017, Mrs Antoinette said that many countries found a solution to HIV/AIDS infection among children and babies who are born with HIV Positive.
Mrs Winnie Byanyima, Executive Director of Oxfam International — a confederation of non-governmental organisations aimed at creating lasting solutions to the injustice of poverty in the world said that female citizens are still vulnerable in terms of accessing information in Africa where some young women and girls get infected with AIDS and remain uninformed of their status.
She said that this is due to traditional myths of the culture and gender based violence.
“Girls do not have information about Sexual reproductive health, it is a problem because they are no able to take a decision on their health. They should be given enough information in regard with their lives to avoid getting into troubles.”
She commended efforts by African Union (AU) member countries in supporting the global HIV/AIDS fund. However, the invested money into this fund got a decrease of $1billion in 2018, which is a concern that requires quick solution.
Byanyima said that a half of new HIV/AIDS infections in Africa is among Female sex workers, drug abuse users, homo-sexual people and prisoners because these people fail to get tested and do not take medicines because their rights are not respected.
The discussions brought together first ladies of African countries and other officials from Rwanda, Congo, Botswana, Ghana, Niger, Mali and Tchad.
The Express News