Rose Ejembi, Makurdi
The Aids Healthcare Foundation (AHF) has distributed 100,000 pieces of condoms in Makurdi, the Benue State capital, as part of activities to mark this year’s International Condoms Day (ICD).
Speaking to newsmen after a road walk, in Makurdi, on Tuesday, ART Clinician and Site Coordinator of AHF Nigeria, Dr. Shuaibu Joseph, disclosed that a minimum of 3,000 people were counselled and tested during the weeklong event to create awareness on the need to reduce the spread of HIV/AIDS and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) through safe sex practices.
He noted that the theme for this year, “Always in Fashion” was particularly apt since according to him, “condoms are always in fashion because it is never out of fashion to play safe, remain protected, keep STIs and unwanted pregnancies at bay and it will never be out of fashion to halt the spread of HIV through correct and consistent use of condoms.”
Shuaibu maintained that ICD was an event which sought to promote the use of condoms as a means of preventing STIs and unwanted pregnancies adding that since its inception in 2009, AHF had been at the forefront of promoting the celebration in a bid to reduce the spread of HIV through safe sex practices.
“AHF today is the largest global AIDS organization operating in 39 countries across the globe with over 870,000 clients in care. AHF remains committed to the continuous provision of cutting edge medicine and advocacy regardless of ability to pay.”
On his part, Executive Secretary, Benue State AIDS Control Agency (BENSACA), Dr. Gideon Dura, noted that one of the major ways of contracting HIV was through sex, hence, the need for all sexually-active persons to protect themselves by the use of condoms.
Said Dura, “This year’s theme is well captured because condoms, like any other elements of fashion, remains fashionable. If we must play and remain alive, we must never do without condoms.”
The event culminated in an outdoor dance entertainment and free HIV screening at the Kenville Park in Makurdi which was largely attended by youths.