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Wednesday 21 December 2005
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IRIN PlusNews Weekly Issue 245, 5 August 2005


[This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]


NEWS:

SOUTH AFRICA: The quiet after the storm
NAMIBIA: Consultations on national HIV/AIDS policy begin
AFRICA: Anti-AIDS medication still too expensive - MSF report
CONGO: Government agrees to allocate more money to fight HIV/AIDS

CONFERENCES/ EVENTS/ RESEARCH/ RESOURCES:

JOB OPPORTUNITIES:

HAYDEN'S DIARY

HIV/AIDS Feminisation: A new wine in an old bottle

LINKS:

1. The Africa Regional Sexuality Resource Centre



SOUTH AFRICA: The quiet after the storm

Calm has returned to the Frontier hospital in Queenstown, in South Africa's Eastern Cape province, after at least 40 people were injured when police opened fire with rubber bullets and teargas during protests against the slow rollout of anti-AIDS drugs.

The action last month sparked outrage across the globe, with UNAIDS condemning the attacks and the South African Police Service subsequently issuing a public apology for the assaults.

But beneath the hype surrounding the demonstrations - organised by AIDS lobby group, the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) - there has been very little focus on the reasons for the demonstrations: the slow pace of the antiretroviral (ARV) rollout at the regional hospital, which has been exacerbated by the rural nature of the Eastern Cape province.

More details



NAMIBIA: Consultations on national HIV/AIDS policy begin

The Namibian government is drafting its first national policy on HIV/AIDS and hopes to complete it by World AIDS Day on 1 December.

At the behest of the government a draft policy was compiled by the AIDS law unit of the Legal Assistance Centre (LAC), an NGO, and discussed last week at a series of workshops with stakeholders from the legal, social and community sectors.

This will be the country's first national AIDS policy, although "there have been national strategic plans on HIV/AIDS in place", said Rianne Selle, national coordinator of the government's official AIDS awareness campaigns.

More details



AFRICA: Anti-AIDS medication still too expensive - MSF report

As the prices of first-line anti-AIDS medication continue to fall, newer antiretrovirals (ARVs) can cost up to 12 times more in sub-Saharan Africa, according to a report by Medecines Sans Frontieres (MSF).

Paediatric formulations were also more expensive than adult ARV drugs: treating a child for one year could be as much as US $816, while the same triple-drug regimen for adults was only $182.

If these prohibitive costs were not cut soon, the South African government would have to dramatically scale up its budget for antiretroviral (ARV) drugs in the next few years, warned Marta Darder, the MSF spokeswoman in South Africa, which could lead to fewer people receiving the life-prolonging medication.

More details



CONGO: Government agrees to allocate more money to fight HIV/AIDS

The Ministry for Health and Population of the Republic of Congo (ROC) signed an agreement on Saturday allocating 803.62 million francs CFA (US $1.48 million) to support the fight against HIV/AIDS.

The money will go to the government's National Council for the Fight Against AIDS, known by its French acronym CNLS.

More details



HAYDEN'S DIARY

HIV/AIDS Feminisation: A new wine in an old bottle

Dear Diary,

Men have long held their dominance over women by creating a culture that defines what men do as being superior to what women do.

In the past this usually meant that the 'fairer sex' had to struggle for the same right to education, employment and property, but male dominance in the era of HIV/AIDS means that many women now also have to struggle for the right to life.

This is often true of developing countries, including as South Africa, where some communities still follow patriarchal laws that govern a women's place in society, as well as in sexual relationships.

Blatant sexist behaviour is proudly handed down through generations of men, like a treasured family heirloom, while medieval traditions and cultural practices continue to be reinforced by the public's seemingly limitless tolerance of sexual caste and class systems.



LINKS:

1. The Africa Regional Sexuality Resource Centre (ARSRC), located in Lagos, Nigeria, is a project of Action Health Incorporated (AHI), established in 2002 to promote more information and public dialogue on human sexuality. The centre's goal is to contribute to positive changes in relevant policies and programmes by creating mechanisms for learning and advocacy at local, regional and global levels. Activities under the initiative focus on four of the most populous countries in Africa: Egypt (North Africa), Kenya (East Africa), Nigeria (West Africa) and South Africa for the Southern Africa region.

To visit the website: www.arsrc.org

[ENDS]




 
Recent AFRICA Reports
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IRIN PlusNews Weekly Issue 264, 16 December 2005,  16/Dec/05
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Links
AIDS Media Center
Le portail d'informations générales de la Côte d’Ivoire
VIH Internet
Sida Info Services
Aides

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