The Ondo State Government on Tuesday screened about 800,000 residents for Human ImmunoDefeciency Virus and assured residents they would soon be freed of the virus.
The Secretary to the State Government and Chairman, Ondo State Agency for the Control of AIDS, Dr. Aderotimi Adelola, said this during a condom use and safer sex sensitisation held in some hotels in Akure, the state capital in commemoration of the 2015 World AIDS Day.
He said, “The government is working towards ensuring there is zero HIV infection in the state. There will also be campaigns against discrimination and stigmatisation of people living with HIV. ODSACA has embarked on consistent HIV counselling and testing in every nook and cranny of the state.
“The law relating to HIV in the state empowers ODSACA to enforce HIV related laws, as such, it is a severe offence for hoteliers not to put condom packs in their rooms in order to promote safer sex, reduce the spread of the virus; the agency will not hesitate to prosecute defaulters.”
The SSG said the agency with the support of other stakeholders was implementing strategic action plans in order to promote behavioural change, ensure care and support for people living with the virus.
He encouraged people to know their status, noting that HIV was not a death sentence.
“HIV education is now being inculcated in the secondary school curriculum. Youths are encouraged on abstinence and to spread the campaign in their homes and among their peers. Private sectors are also urged to see the task as a social responsibility to provide care and support for people living with the virus,” he added.