H.E. Y.K. Museveni has expressed concerned over the rising internal stigma among people living with HIV/AIDS saying its now one of the factors fueling growing numbers of HIV among Ugandans.
The minister for presidency, Esther Mbayo while addressing journalists today in Kampala ahead of the Philly Bongole Lutaya day, sighted the collective need to fight stigma and discrimination as the only way internal stigma among people living with HIV/AIDS will feel safe, religiously swallow their medicine which in the end will result into viral suppression.
However, the director general Uganda AIDS commission, Dr. Nelson Musoba mentions that although stigma among people living with HIV/AIDS has been reducing, the number still stand at 30% with men taking the lion’s share.
He further states that the commission has rolled out a number of programmes geared at fighting stigma among people living with HIV/AIDS and the communities they live in.
17TH October will be the day when Uganda marks Philly Bongole Lutaya day to remember his work during the fight against AIDS.
In the late 80s Philly Bongole Lutaya declared that he was HIV positive after testing in Sweden where he was pursuing his music career then.
Bongole’s declaration was a shock to many Ugandans with some thinking he was pulling up a stunt for his musical career.
Since his declaration, Uganda has made significant progress in reducing new HIV infections, HIV prevalence and AIDS related deaths. In the late 80s and early 90s HIV prevalence ranging from 18% among the general population up to 30% in specific population groups. Its now at 6.8% for women and 4.2% for men, 2.8% among young women and 1.1% among young men.
Currently people living with HIV/AIDS in Uganda total to 4m and over 1.4m are on treatment.