Tuesday June 1 2010

Ban Ki-Moon calls 15 per cent contribution to fight Aids

By Alfred Nyongesa Wandera

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon has urged nations in Africa to set aside 15 per cent of their national budgets towards combating Aids and HIV.
Currently, Uganda has allocated only five per cent of its national budget towards fight against Aids, with the majority of the contribution coming from the donor community.
Uganda also allocates only 10 per cent of its budget to the ministry of Health, denting efforts of curbing highly health risks.
Speaking during his tour to the Joint Clinical Research Centre (JCRC) in Kampala on Monday where he met victims of the Aids scourge, Mr Ki-Moon said Aids and HIV remain a serious threat that needs concerted efforts to curb.
“If Uganda had not taken care of these people (Aids victims), we would not be having this band to entertain us,” said Mr Ki-Moon.
He urged the donor community to step up more efforts to contribute funds to support the Aids victims especially women and girls.
He said UN is working closely with the donor community to replenish global fund to fight Aids, Malaria and Tuberculosis.
Praising Uganda for being a leader in the world in fighting the scourge, the UN chief said he has set up a campaign to reduce child mortality rate as a result of Aids and promised more help for the country.
“I am returning with heavy responsibility and I will do whatever I can within my powers as the UN Secretary General to help the Aids Victims in Uganda,” he said.
The Executive Director of JCRC Prof Peter Mugyenyi said the centre has so far treated 72,000 Aids patients and that 34,000 are still under its care.
He added that although 200,000 Ugandans receive access to treatment, the number of those infected but cannot access the services doubles, adding that there are many cases of Aids incidents.

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