Home News Association attributes death of HIV victims to discrimination

Association attributes death of HIV victims to discrimination


ABUJA – The Association of Women Living with HIV/AIDS in Nigeria (ASWHAN) has blamed the large number of death recorded among AIDS victims to discrimination.
Mrs Benedict Farina, Project Officer of the association, disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday in Abuja.
She said due to discrimination against women and children with the virus, they were unable to access health facilities to address their present plights.[pro_ad_display_adzone id=”10″]
Analysing the views of some HIV victims, Farina said a lot of them based their failure to access the facilities on the possibility of being seen by those that knew them.
According to her, they think it would automatically make them a laughing stock by those people.
Farina explained that a lot of them had been sacked from their various offices for declaring their status while others were driven out of their matrimonial homes with their children.[pro_ad_display_adzone id=”10″]
Farina advocated for the enactment of the Anti-discrimination Stigma and Denial Bill would assist those living with the virus to live freely among other Nigerians.[pro_ad_display_adzone id=”10″]
She said the passage of the bill would go a long way to protect the victims as anyone that discriminated against them would be made to pay fine or risk imprisonment for 30 years.
“It is pathetic to note that majority of these victims are dying as a result of discrimination against them and not the AIDS itself that is killing them.
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“We have facilities but women and children do not want to access the facilities because they feel that people will recognise them and spread the news of their status around.
“So, we are appealing to the Federal Government to sign this bill as a matter of urgency to enable them have their rightful place in the society,’’ she said.
According to her, failure to sign the bill into law by the present administration will lead to exercise in futility because the new administration will start the process afresh. (NAN)

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