CROSS RIVER ODDITY: HIV victims suffer rejection, stigmatisation

The programme manager of Enhancing Nigeria’s Response to HIV and AIDS (ENR) in Cross River State, Mrs Mary Mbukpa has lamented the rate at which many people still stigmatise, reject and disdain sufferers of HIV/AIDS in the country. Mbukpa said this in Calabar at a One-Day HIV Education Mainstreaming Workshop organised by ENR in collaboration with the State Action Committee for the Control of AIDS.
“A lot of people are still bent on not only discriminating against but still stigmatising people living with HIV and AIDS even in work places. The rate of HIV stigmatisation in the state is very high. “There is the need for MDAs to implement the HIV and AIDS in work-place policy document. There is the need for more HIV and AIDS education in the offices and down to the communities,” she said.
According to her, the State Government was trying to put in place a comprehensive lasting HIV and AIDS progrmmes. She said this was to ensure the sustenance of all the existing structures and to establish new ones in readiness for the eventual exit of donor agencies in the country.
Speaking, the Deputy Director, Prevention Specialist in ENR, Dr Segun Oyedeji called form the mainstreaming of HIV and AIDS policy into the National Development plans. Oyedeji said that this would enable a multi-sectoral and multi-stakeholders response by ensuring the integration of planning, resources and programming issues. He listed six guiding principles for mainstreaming including national framework for HIV and AIDS; advocacy; continuous education and capacity building. Contributing,

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