Kitgum town council officials have expressed concern about the rate of HIV/Aids infection there. The HIV prevalence in Kitgum town council is 10 percent above the national average of 6.7 percent.
Town council officials blame the high rate of HIV infections to the influx of South Sudanese nationals and reckless lifestyle by residents.
Richard Ojara Okwera, the Kitgum Town council says the south Sudanese engage in unprotected sex because they are less informed about the disease, which has escalated HIV/Aids infection. Ojara says they have embarked on the sensitization of both foreigners and residents about the dangers of the disease. Ojara says if this is not done, Kitgum town council will soon be declared a disaster zone;
Thomas Ojok, Kitgum district AIDS Focal Person says there is need for the local leadership to take more responsibility in the HIV/Aids fight. He says the civil and political leaders have surrendered the fight of HIV AIDS to NGO’s and health workers. Ojok says unless the leaders change their attitude, there is likely to be further escalation of HIV infections in the district;
He wants quick response from the leaders to combat the scourge. James Titus Twesige the Deputy Country Director Alliance of Mayors and Municipal Leaders Against AIDS says Uganda has almost lost the fight against the pandemic. He says in the past Uganda was a model for the fight, but has now lost the position. Twesige blames this on the laxity of the leaders at both local and national levels.
He says the Association of Mayors and Municipal leaders has launched a programme in Kitgum and four other towns with high prevalence rates to sensitize locals on the dangers of the disease. He says the programme will strive to provide both information and resources to combat the disease. Twesige has appealed to the people of Kitgum to intensify campaign against the disease to save the future generation;
He says the association will work with all the urban authorities to ensure that the rate of infection comes down among the residents. Kitgum district has one of the highest HIV prevalence rates in the country. The latest figures put the infection rate at nine percent, with Kitgum town council on the lead with 10 percent rate of infection