Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Groups warn against cut in HIV funds

By NATION REPORTER

A reduction of funds allocated to the fight against HIV/Aids in Africa will reverse the gains made in the past, lobbyists have warned.

They noted at a meeting in Nairobi on Wednesday that increased funding had led to tremendous achievements in the past that included successful awareness on various ways to reduce new infections and therefore any move to slow funding would negatively impact on past successes.

“African countries still need these funds. They are still developing and require such assistance,” said Dr Peninah Lutung, the Africa bureau chief at Aids Healthcare Foundation.

The foundation hosted the conference that brought together advocates who asked developed countries not to cut their financial assistance.

The US Government under the Obama administration has been accused by human rights groups of reducing funding to the President’s Emergency Plan for Aids Relief (PEPFAR), an organisation formed by former US President Bush to advance the fight against HIV/Aids.

Dr Stephen Karau, a participant, said donor funding constituted 75 per cent of the total budget.

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