Pastors’ ‘Weird’ Counseling To HIV Couples, Ghana’s High Cases And More..

The decision by a few religious leaders not to accept marriages for would-be couples who test positive for HIV/AIDS during counselling has been linked to the promotion of stigmatisation and discrimination against people living with the disease.

The decision of whether to proceed with a partner who has HIV positive, ought to be the sole privilege of the future couple and not religious leaders.

This is as per the Board Chairman of Inerela + Ghana, and Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP), Mr Jones Blantari.

“Asking would-be-couples to go and do HIV test during counselling should not be a must. Counselling is for people to make informed choices. Both parties, that is the would-be couple can agree to go and do some test to see what is wrong with them and based on the results, they can agree to go ahead with the marriage or not. But you a pastor or Imam should not say because of this I am stopping the marriage. No!” ACP Blantari stressed.

He made sense of that HIV/AIDS test results shouldn’t be unveiled to anyone including a minister of God or even an imam, adding that it ought to be the couple’s decision to reveal the consequences of the test to the man of God or imam willfully, but not an issue of impulse.

ACP Blantari said what some of those religious leaders were currently doing was that, even before would-be couples were asked to start counselling during which period they would be asked to go for HIV/AIDS test, they had already been introduced to the congregation.

Thus, when any of them tests positive for the illness, that is the end of the story for the couple. Meaning, religious leaders have some sort of power to drop the marriage?

He stated that what most of those religious leaders failed to recognise was that, if somebody had tested positive for HIV/AIDS, and was taking the drugs religiously, that person could go into the state that the virus was undetectable, and could not transfer the virus to a partner who was negative.

However, he said, most of the religious leaders did not know about that and so went ahead to refuse to allow would-be couples to go ahead with their marriages the moment one of them tested positive.

People have been advised to move away from religion with regard to this particular issue, because if they did not, they would continue to be deceived by some of these religious leaders, especially those in the Christian faith.

A Licenced Councillor at the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), Paulina Louisa Essel, who spoke on gender-based violence called on journalists to use the pen to save lives.

Meanwhile, a total of 23,495 people tested positive for HIV in the first half of this year (January to June) in Ghana. The figure is two per cent of the 948,094 people who undertook HIV testing from January to June 2022.

They were from different segments of the population, namely: men, pregnant women, non-pregnant women, homosexuals and female sex workers. Last year’s half year figure was 25,545, outnumbering this year’s figure.

How To Improve Your Brain Health. Eat These Foods

Health experts have recommended that Ghana Health Service and the Ghana Aids Commission need to increase education to tell people that HIV is still Real. The infection is still around and there should be consistent updates on it. Most authorities on the matter would agree, Prevention techniques ought to also be thought about, whether they are children or grown-ups.

As at now, the vast majority of the 23,495 individuals who tested positive had since been placed on HIV treatment. New cases continue to ascend because of carelessness and obliviousness, and people think the infection is no more an issue.

Unfortunately, around 29% of the populace don’t have the foggiest idea about their HIV status and the 21% people living with HIV have still not reached at the viral suppression stage, meaning those 21% may as yet transfer the illness to their partners and others.

In Ghana, the predominance of the sickness was higher in men who had intercourse with men, with a commonness pace of 18%; female sex workers, with a predominance of 4.6 percent, and the people who have STIs, with a pervasiveness of around 12%, as per the last survey they did.

The 12 per cent prevalence recorded for those with STIs meant that if one had an existing STI, one had a higher risk of getting HIV.

There should be a call for continuous education on HIV. The Ghana AIDS Commission should continue its advocacy; NGOs should play their roles in communities, while metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies should use the one per cent fund on HIV allocated to them on the prevention of the disease and other linkage services.

Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *