BY HARRIET CHIKANDIWA
Senators have urged government to spearhead the fight against HIV and Aids by setting up a special presidential fund.
The call was made in the Senate when chiefs were presenting a report on HIV and Aids management and financing.
Senator Chief Ngungumbane said setting up a presidential fund would demonstrate the highest level of political will on the part of government to deal with the HIV pandemic.
“Zimbabwean legislators should lead by example through voluntary HIV testing and counselling as well as continue to lobby for more HIV and Aids awareness campaign programmes in the country by December, 2021,” he said.
“The Ministry of Health and Child Care should endeavour to establish roadside health clinics (roadside wellness centres) at truck stops and borders that stay open until late and located near parking facilities by December 2022.”
Ngungumbane said government should also provide healthcare services, counselling and health education for long-distance truck drivers, sex workers and surrounding communities.
“In its 2022 National Budget, the Finance and Economic Development ministry should consider coming up with effective financing mechanisms geared towards increased resource mobilisation for HIV and Aids prevention, treatment and care in the country.”
He added: “Consider directing all government ministries and local governments to contribute 0,1% of their annual budgets to HIV and Aids programming as is the case in Uganda.
“The National Aids Council should continue the scaling up of HIV and Aids programmes and activities in rural communities, targeting young people who are most at risk in order to achieve the United Nations targets of 95/95/95 goal.”
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