HIV PREVALENCE FOUR TIMES HIGHER AMONG FEMALES THAN MALES IN SOUTH AFRICA

The South African National AIDS Council (SANAC) says HIV prevalence among females in the country is nearly four times higher than in their male counterparts.

It has called on South Africans to come together to empower young women and fight the rate of new infections among the youth as the country marked World AIDS Day on Thursday.

SANAC officials joined Cabinet Ministers led by by Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa in speaking with residents in an area in Daveyton, about 50 kilometres east of here, as part pf the national celebrations of World AIDS Day.

They discussed the challenges facing young women regarding new HIV infections and the blesser-blessee phenomenon.

“These young people are not infecting themselves. They are also not infected by boys of the same age. These 15 to 24-year-olds are infected by older men who have money and who are able to dominate. These young women are unable to negotiate [for] safer sex,” says SANAC Deputy Chairperson Mapaseka Letsike in referring to the blesser-blessee phenomenon.

“What we know as well is that gender-based violence is the driver of the epidemic. So the prevalence (of HIV) among young women is quite worrying.”

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

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