Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Rinsing off HIV

Former South African vice-president Jacob Zuma, has said the most ignorant thing ever said in relation to HIV. Jacob Zuma, said during his trial for rape, that he took a shower after having unprotected sex with a woman who was HIV-positive. He reckoned that showering would prevent him from contracting the virus. What dumbassness! A friend of Alayescoro quipped, "he probably ate it and then brushed his teeth, that would be alright." He also said that there were no condoms available, but he had to have sex with her - because when he was growing up, he was taught that it is wrong to arouse a woman and then leave her splayed on the bed without finishing the job. Spoken like a true man, "but she was aroused, honey. It would've have been a sin not to!"

On a more serious note, it is this kind of ignorance which perpetuates the spread of HIV. People raping infants in SA, because of local lore that sex with a virgin cures HIV. Or even some belief among men that they're immune from the virus. The Catholic Church preventing the use of contraception doesn't help either. The spread of HIV should not be as fast as it is today. If you look at figures from AVERT, one in five South African's are HIV-positive, five percent of Nigerians have the virus - that's over six million people. In Western Europe and North America on the other hand, HIV is more or less relegated to drug users sharing needles. The imbalance is too great, and public figure like Zuma spouting such nonsense doesn't help. What sub-Saharan Africa needs is a massive education campaign. Billboards in cities aren't enough, the message should be preached in churches, dramatised on radio and television, dissected in newspapers, permeated through the ether.

4 comments:

Ceridwen Devi said...

I don't know whether to be sad or mad!

Too Me to blog said...

Heard this on the radio but i was half -asleep so i thought i was making it up (he also said he planned to marry her). its sad.iurc

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