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HIV prevalence in Ghanzi increases

Ghanzi District AIDS Coordinator Ms Tshoganetso Mahupe says the HIV prevalence in Ghanzi district has drastically increased. 

Ms Mahupe said this in an interview at the Men Sector Health Pitso held in Ghanzi recently. She said that the prevalence rate has increased from 13 per cent to 17 per cent, despite many workshops conducted in the district regarding HIV issues. 

With regard to sexually transmitted infections (STI’s), Ms Mahupe said they have recorded a shocking increase of 600 cases in this quarter, compared to the 200 in the previous quarter. She also noted that safe male circumscion have also decreased in large numbers. Ms Mahupe said in a quarter the district normally registers more than a 100, but this time around they have only 10 cases of safe male circumscion. Gender based violence cases as well as teenage pregnancy have also increased, said Ms Mahupe.

Ms Mahupe attributed an increase in HIV prevalence rate to new HIV infections. She also noted that in 2010 there was no correlation of the HIV to TB infected patients in Ghanzi, but now the district has 40 per cent of TB patients who are co-infected with HIV; something which she said was disturbing. 

Meanwhile Ghanzi District council secretary Mr Odirile Mabaila encouraged people to participate and join as members of Men Sector. He said Men Sector discusses issues which are of benefit to both men and women and help them understand some issues, mentioning issues such as family, gender based violence and the  importance of couple or partners  testing together. 

Mr Mabaila noted that some cases of gender based violence are contributed by the ignorance of issues of sexuality by men. He said these are issues which are discussed and explained at Men Sector committee, therefore urged men to join these committees in order to reduce and end gender based violence. 

He further advised men to follow healthy diets, saying an unhealthy diet contribute to impotence which could eventually lead to gender based violence. Mr Mabaila also cautioned men on women who are out to trap and entice them sexually in pursuit of money. He said such women often decry rape if men do not meet to their monetary demands, and that usually land innocent men in jail. 

Joining Men Sector committee, Mr Mabaila said is one way of keeping away from unfortunate situations, as well as gaining knowledge which they otherwise did not have an understanding of. 

Attendees and members of the committee appealed for revival of clubs such as Boys Scout as well as establishments of recreational centers in Ghanzi. They also have urged members to take advantage of men’s social Sunday soccer games to spread messages of safe male circumcision campaign. 

Men Sector Health Pitso was held under the theme Mmogo re ka kgona…. Together we can……Botsogo jwame, boikarabelo jwame, with the aim of discussing social issues that hinders the district to curb the HIV/AIDS scourge. Ends

Source : BOPA

Author : Ketshepile More

Location : Ghanzi

Event : Interview

Date : Nov 09 Mon,2015

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