Politics Ogun House Passes anti-HIV/AIDS Stigmatisation Bill



The Ogun Assembly on Thursday passed a bill for an Act prohibiting all forms of stigmatisation and discrimination against persons living with HIV/AIDS in the state.
Mr Israel Jolaosho, the House Majority Leader, moved the motion for the third reading of the bill while the motion was seconded by Mr Edunjobi Babatunde.

Mr Akinpelu Aina, the Chairman, House Committee on Health, said the passage of the bill would go a long way in meeting the yearnings and aspirations of people living with the virus in the state.

Aina said: ``HIV/AIDS related stigma and discrimination constitute one of the greatest barriers in effectively tackling the virus.

``Stigma deters individuals from finding out about their HIV status and also discourages those who know they are infected from sharing their diagnosis and seeking treatment for themselves.

``Stigma and discrimination in Ogun occur in the places of work, healthcare facilities, religious circles, community and the private sector.

``The bill will prevent all forms of stigmatisation and provide protection and care for persons living with HIV/AIDS.

``It is aimed at preventing stigmatisation to ensure that those with the disease do not become outcasts in the society.

``It is also aimed at promoting self-esteem of those living with the condition.

``The bill will seek to educate the people that they should not use words that will label people living with HIV/AIDS.’’

The lawmaker said the bill was a step toward controlling the pandemic and addressing human rights issues concerning people living with the virus.

The House also passed into law a bill to provide for Community Development Programmes in Ogun.