10 December 2018

Zimbabwe: Health Fears Raised As Used Condoms Litter Hwange Streets

Hwange — The National Aids Council (NAC) has lamented reckless disposal of used condoms by couples in the mining town saying this posed a serious health risk for children who innocently pick and use them as balloons.

Giving a solidarity message in Hwange at a recent clean-up campaign where provincial minister Richard Moyo was guest, NAC District Aids Action coordinator Nehemiah Ndlovu appealed for safe disposal of the contraceptive which he said also polluted the environment.

"We have treatment targets that we have put across to achieve a 90/90/90 scenario by 2030 where we are saying HIV and Aids should not pose a problem. Here we are focusing on 90 percent people knowing their status, 90 percent put on ART, and 90 percent having a suppressed viral load.

"As we do this, we give away a lot of condoms to try to prevent HIV. Since today we are saying zero tolerance to litter, let's be careful how we dispose of condoms. If we just throw them around the way we are doing, our little children will pick and blow as balloons. Let's correctly dispose of these condoms because children are picking and blowing them thereby posing a health risk," said Ndlovu.

He also chastised some minors who clandestinely collect for casual use, some condoms from dispenser sites where they are placed strategically for people to collect freely.

"Kids, please stop collecting condoms they are for adults," added Ndlovu.

Previously there were debates about whether condoms should be put at public places and distributed in schools where pupils are exposed to.

Hwange town is one of the sexually transmitted diseases hotspots where prostitution is common even among juveniles and married women.

Poverty and unemployment have been identified as the major causes of the practice hence the significant use of condoms.

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