14 June 2012

Zimbabwe: MPs Lead the Fight Against HIV

Photo: Herald
At least 40 legislators were circum­cised under the Zimbabwe Parliamentarians Against HIV and Aids programme.

Members of Zimbabwe's parliament are set to lead the way in the fight to stop the spread of HIV in the country, with more than 60 MPs agreeing to a public AIDS test next week.

The public action follows the launch of the Zimbabwe Parliamentarians against HIV and AIDS (ZIPAH) campaign, launched in March, with MPs from across the political divide pledging to end the stigma of AIDS testing.

ZIPAH Chairperson Blessing Chebundo told SW Radio Africa on Thursday that as a starting point, legislators have volunteered for the public test, set to take place at parliament next Friday.

"Legislators should lead an exemplary life by going for voluntary HIV testing, urging them to disclose their status as part of a broader program to achieve the global campaign that focuses on the three zeros, namely, zero new infections, zero discrimination and zero deaths related to HIV and AIDS," Chebundo said.

He added: "On the 22nd of this month 61 legislators will go for testing while 28 of them will also undergo male circumcision."

Chebundo added that this is the start of what he hopes will be a larger campaign and that more MPs and community leaders will join their efforts. He said it will take a national commitment towards fighting the disease to end it's spread.

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