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Zimbabwean Lawmakers Take Public HIV Tests In Campaign To Fight Stigma

“Zimbabwean lawmakers started taking public HIV tests on Wednesday in a campaign seeking to raise awareness and fight the stigma associated with AIDS,” VOA News reports, adding, “At least 60 parliamentarians from across the political divide will have tested when the three-day program, which is also offering counseling services, ends Friday.” According to the news service, “The Zimbabwe Parliamentarians Against HIV/AIDS, a voluntary organization formed early this year to promote awareness and fight stigma in communities, is leading the campaign” (Gumbo/Gonda, 6/21).

Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe “recently said that revealing HIV status will help stop the spread of the pandemic and fight the stigma associated with the virus that causes AIDS,” the news service writes in a separate article. “Speaker of Parliament Lovemore Moyo was among MPs who were tested for HIV,” VOA notes, adding, “He said parliament took Mugabe’s calls seriously, [and] expects other branches of the government to do the same.” The news service notes, “Some male parliament members will be circumcised Friday” (Mhofu, 6/21).

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