The Resident Representative of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Elsie Attafuah, has pledged to continue supporting all efforts to sustain the fight against HIV, Malaria and TB in Uganda.
Ms. Elsie pledged during the high-level national dialogue on HIV health and the law organised by Uganda Network on Law, Ethics and HIV/AIDS (UGANET) alongside others partners at partners Pearl of Africa Hotel in Kampala
Uganda has registered major milestones in the HIV/AIDS response in the period of eight years and New HIV infections have significantly reduced by 51 per cent to an estimated 50,000, and deaths too have reduced by 45 per cent to approximately 25,000. An estimated 1.38 million adults and children are living with HIV in Uganda and 1,000 new infections are averred to have been registered every week in Uganda.
Despite the progress made in combatting HIV the country still has significant service delivery gaps in HIV and Health. Sustainable financing and partnerships also remain a major challenge. There is still stigmatization and discrimination, which are major human rights barriers in the AIDS response.
Held under the theme ‘Leaving No One Behind: Working in Unison to Address Human Rights Barriers to Ending the HIV/TB and Malaria Epidemics’, Ms Elsie it rhymes with this year’s theme for the International Human Rights Day; ‘Youth Standing Up for Human Rights.’
“We aim to celebrate the potential of youth as constructive agents of change, amplify their voices, and engage a broad range of global audiences in the promotion and protection of rights.”
Uganda is a young country with the youth making up 75 per cent of the population. The youth must be better engaged to accelerate progress in combatting HIV, promoting healthy lifestyles and influencing the development and implementation of important legislation on HIV and Health.
She said youth participation is essential to achieve sustainable development for all. Young people’s voices need to be listened to, to inform more effective decision-making and achieve sustainable development for all.
For over three decades now, Uganda’s HIV response has been built on human rights-based approaches to prevention, treatment, care and support. The country has established enabling legislation to safeguard rights which helps reduce people’s vulnerability to HIV.
She commended the Government of Uganda for organizing this dialogue as part of the commemoration of the International Human Rights Day.
“Uganda’s HIV response has been built on human rights-based approaches to prevention, treatment, care and support. The country has established enabling legislation to safeguard rights which helps reduce people’s vulnerability to HIV.” She said
“I call upon all leaders of Uganda; from the central and local governments, the traditional and religious leaders, Members of Parliaments, and medical staff to uphold and sustain achievements made in the HIV and Malaria response so far. We should therefore invest more in building partnerships for sustainable health financing, with an emphasis on promoting a Human-Rights-Based-Approach for HIV and Health. An HIV free generation begins with you.”