Winnie Byanyima, the wife to opposition politician and Doctor, Kizza Besigye, has called for better protection of women and girls against HIV/AIDS. As the executive director of United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), she spotted three major issues.
She hopes that these can help to bring the girls to safety and empowerment.
One of the issues includes rolling out universal primary and secondary education for females. Others are teaching girls comprehensive sexuality education and challenging toxic masculinities in communities.
“Let us support our governments, put the resources down to roll out universal primary and secondary education. It is the leadership of young girls and women that will change the narrative and help us create the equal future we want. Together we will raise their voices and help them,” said Byanyima.
She said this as she spoke at the high-level meeting on championing the priorities of women and girls in the HIV response. This meeting took place in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
The minister for Gender, Labour and Social Development, Betty Amongi spoke at the same event.
She said the number of HIV/AIDS infections among adolescent girls and young women is becoming alarming.
She also said this requires dedicated leadership and prioritization of the needs of girls and women in the national response plan.
Additionally, she noted that the country previously made some progress on the epidemic. However, trends have recently indicated an unacceptable level of new infections.
This is mainly among adolescent girls aged 10-19 years and young women 15-24 years.
“Estimates show that 98% of new HIV infections among 10–19-year-old boys and girls – occur among girls. And 78% of all new HIV infections among 15–24-year-old young men and women occur in women,” she said.
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