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Pandor "immoral"

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  • Leendert van Oostrum
    Ironies hoe die betekenis van die woord immoral in hierdie berig omgekeer word. Groete, Leendert From health24 -
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 30, 2006
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      Ironies hoe die betekenis van die woord "immoral" in hierdie berig omgekeer

      Groete, Leendert

      From health24 - <http://www.health24.com/news/HIV_AIDS/1-920,35547.asp>

      Pandor immoral - Achmat

      Last updated: Friday, April 28, 2006

      Education Minister Naledi Pandor was acting immorally by refusing to make
      condoms available in schools, Treatment Action Campaign chairman Zackie
      Achmat told delegates to an international conference this week.

      "Pandor's immoral position undermines informed choice and places youth at
      increased risk of harm," he said in an address at the closing session of
      Microbicides 2006 in Cape Town.

      Achmat said a survey carried out in South Africa in 2004 showed that 62 per
      cent of young people who were HIV positive but did not know it, believed
      they were not at risk of HIV infection.

      It is a tragedy

      "It is a tragedy that 25 years into the epidemic Naledi Pandor, our minister
      of education, mimics George Bush when she ignores scientific evidence and
      refuses to make condoms available in schools," he told delegates.

      The absence of serious sexuality education also placed learners at increased
      risk of teenage pregnancy, sexually transmitted infection and HIV.

      Govt. promoting conspiracy of silence

      Achmat hit out at the government and President Thabo Mbeki for promoting
      what he said was a "conspiracy of silence", accusing them of trying to make
      Aids deaths "invisible".

      "Tragically, President Mbeki continues to display all the symptoms of HIV
      denial," he said.

      The four-day microbicides conference, attended by over 1200 delegates from
      around the world, was called to discuss the development of an Aids-fighting
      treatment, most likely a gel, that women can insert into their vaginas
      before sex.

      Call for more funding

      In a video message played at the closing session, UNAids executive director
      Peter Piot said he was "deeply frustrated" that the search for an efficient
      microbicide had been progressing so slowly, partly because of a lack of

      Echoing calls made by earlier speakers at the conference, including women's
      rights advocate Graca Machel, he said resources invested in microbicide
      research had to be doubled, which would mean only an additional 150 million
      US dollars a year.

      "Developing an efficient microbicide is one of the most important things
      that the world can do to get ahead of Aids," he said. "So we can not allow
      any delay."

      Urgency of pandemic is escalating

      The World Health Organization's assistant director for family and community
      health, Joy Phumaphi, told the conference that the urgency of the Aids
      pandemic continued to escalate, with close to six million new infections
      worldwide last year.

      "The human carnage has become a living nightmare, so visible and tangible
      that in Africa, it is a defining feature of all human interaction," she

      In order to have effective microbicides in the shortest possible time,
      global stakeholders needed to commit resources to areas including research
      and development, health systems and training.

      She urged the pharmaceutical industry to invest in microbicides as a product
      that had the potential to double or even treble in some settings the
      population covered by the condom market.

      Aids has a woman's face

      She noted that United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan had said that
      Aids had a woman's face, particularly in Africa, where women were so much
      more vulnerable to the disease than men.

      "The imperatives we have witnessed at the conference, in our communities and
      at home brook no denial because the face of HIV and Aids is not just the
      face of a woman, it is the face of the struggle for human survival," she

      In a statement, conference organisers said that for the first time in the
      history of microbicide research in South Africa, local scientists and
      government had come together "in solidarity for this new technology".

      "This international forum has presented valuable new information for the
      formulation of the next generation of microbicides," said Prof Gita Ramjee,
      conference co-chair and Medical Research Council researcher. - (Sapa)

      Visit our HIV/Aids Centre for more information.

      April 2006

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