First Lady reaffirms advocacy against HIV/AIDS MTCT



First Lady Aisha Buhari has reaffirmed her commitment towards continues advocacy to ensure the eradication of Mother-to-Child transmission (MTCT) of HIV/Aids in Nigeria.

The first lady, who was represented by the Special Assistant to the President on African First Lady’s Peace Mission, Dr Mairo Almakura, spoke on Tuesday during the 2020 World Aids Day in Abuja.

The theme of the event is ”Ending the HIV/Aids Epidemic: Resilience and Impact.

She expressed the need for strategic partnership to ensure treatment and prevention of mother to child transmission of the disease.

”As a UNAIDS HIV Champion, I advocate for the eradication of mother to child transmission of HIV in Nigeria. I have since mobilised the support of Governors wives to do same at the state level,” she said.

She said stakeholders have obligation to reduce any potential risk to the HIV community.

The first lady said there was need to highlight the successes and the challenges in the treatment and prevention to demonstrate the strength of our resilience.

Buhari, who emphasized the need for increased funding towards fighting the pandemic, urged stakeholders to ensure preventive measures are observed to stop its spread.

In his address, the Director-General, Institute of Peace and Conflicts Resolution, Dr Bakut Bakut, expressed the need for stakeholders to deploy resources to end the scourge.

Bakut said ending HIV/Aids is a task that must be achieved.

According to him, that could only be achieved through collaboration among relevant authorities.

Also speaking, the President, National Council for Women Society (NCWS), Mrs Laraba Shoda, said stigmatisation of the victims of HIV/AIDS was responsible for the inability of some victims to expose their status for proper treatment.

Shoda, therefore, said advocacy must be strengthened to bridge the gap for proper treatment, prevention and control of the disease.

”We must teach our children ways to know the dangers of HIV and how not to be infected with the disease. Families must come together to fight the scourge,” she said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that record from UNAIDS showed that Nigeria’s national HIV prevalence is 1.4 per cent among adults aged between 15 and 49 years.

It also indicated that Nigeria has shown steady progress on increasing access to treatment for people living with HIV with the adoption of a test and treat policy in 2016.

This measure has further accelerated referrals to treatment facilities for people who test positive for the virus. (NAN)