Ogunwale of Department of Education for Hearing Impairment, Federal College of Special Education, Oyo at the 2022 World Aid Day.
World Aids Day: Stigmatisation against people with HIV may end in jail – Don
A lecturer, Dr Oluwatoyin Ogunwale on Thursday advocated jail terms for acts of stigmatisation against people living with HIV and AIDS.
The event was organised by Sunshine Nursery and Primary School, Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife.
The lecture is titled: “HIV/Aids Prevention, Treatment & Care for Individual with Disabilities”.
She commended the management of Sunshine Nursery and Primary School for caring and supporting the hearing and speech impaired people living with HIV and AIDS.
Ogunwale persuaded the physically challenged people to get tested for HIV and AIDS, and urged those who tested positive to start and continue with the treatment.
The guest lecturer, who doubles as Chairperson, Society for Women and AIDS in Africa, frowned at social stigma against those being tested.
“You should not stigmatise or run away from HIV positive people for anyone that does that will be prosecuted and may end up in jail.
“So there’s no cause for alarm, even pregnant or breastfeeding woman that has HIV and AIDS, and using her drug regularly cannot transmit to the baby,” she said.
According to her, the objective behind the initiative is to help men overcome their reluctance to put their health first by exposing them to a supportive network of other men in similar situations.
The expert admonished those affected to ensure they got necessary care and remained on treatment, saying once they had been placed on the drug, “they cannot transmit it’’.
Dr Bisi Anyadike, the Proprietress, Sunshine Nursery & Primary School, explained that HIV and AIDS as a disease “is real and government cannot do it alone, so people need to support them’’.
“We decided to reach out to them by organising a programme to inform people with HIV and AIDS that they have a better chance,” she said.
According to her, HIV and AIDS is a challenge like other challenges and it can be dealt with if all hands are on deck.
“That’s why we are out year-in-year-out to try our best to sensitise people in the community and make our little contribution to it.
The management of Sunshine School distributed food items and toiletries to the physically challenged people after the lecture.
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