HIV/Aids body in Shs10b deficit

A nurse takes blood samples for HIV testing during the World Aids Day celebrations in Kampala in 2017. PHOTO | RACHEL MABALA 

What you need to know:

  • There are about 1.4 million people living with HIV/Aids in Uganda which is a prevalence of 5.2 percent of the total population. 

The Uganda Aids Commission has asked for an increased budgetary allocation of Shs27b in the FY2023/2024 to effectively carry out its mandate.

While addressing the Presidential Affairs Committee of Parliament during a three-day retreat in Entebbe on Friday, Dr Nelson Musoba, the commission’s director general, said their current budget is Shs17b.

“We have projected that the minimum for FY2023/2024, we need Shs27b but we have a gap Shs10b, yet we need to do various activities such as reaching out to different players to ensure that they are doing their work, revive a number of programmes,” Dr Musoba said.

“We are putting this request to the committee and Parliament to ensure that the budget fo  UAC for coordination is raised so that we meet our roles and mandate,” he added.

Regarding the HIV/Aids fight, Dr Musoba said  in 2021, 54,000 new HIV infections were recorded, and 6,000 babies born with HIV thus the need to focus  on ending paediatric HIV. 

“We also need to focus on men because although women are more affected in terms of HIV prevalence, there’s a higher number of women compared to men,” he said.

According to Dr Musoba, there are about 1.4 million people living with HIV/Aids in Uganda which is a prevalence of 5.2 percent of the total population. 

The UAC director general also noted that out of the 17,000 related deaths  last year,7,100 were men compared to 6,000 women meaning men are fewer but more of them are dying because of stigma.

“Last year, we needed about 280 million condoms but only190 million were distributed,” Dr Musoba added.

However,  he said there is reduction in HIV/Aids cases in the country.

“ In 2010, the  annual new HIV infections were 120,000-130,000, however last year, they were 54,000, so there’s a 39 percent reduction in the new HIV infection which, is close to 70 percent reduction in Aids-related deaths because of starting people on treatment.”

Ms Jessica Ababiku, the chairperson of the Presidential Affairs Committee, said they would make an advocacy  on specific activities.

“We want money to be accounted for, We [also] request proper packaging of information because people used to fear  HIV/Aids but it has reduced. People have accepted to live with it [HIV] therefore we want the information to be repackaged because we can’t afford to live in cycles we request government to prioritise self reliance in management of Aids challenges,” Ms Ababiku said.

The State Minister for Kampala and Metropolitan Affairs, Mr Kabuye Kyofatogabye, urged youth to abstain from sex.