Traditional Leaders urged to go for HIV testing

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Traditional Authority Nkhulambe of Phalombe district has asked village Headmen under her jurisdiction to go for HIV/AIDS testing in order to cement their leadership.

Nkhulambe said this recently during a two day HIV/AIDS testing and counselling session that Dignitas International organized in her area.

Chiefs

Traditional Leaders asked to go for HIV testing. (File)

In her remarks, the chief said it is very important for every Traditional Leader to know his/her cero status so that they can be in the lead in encouraging their people to do the same.

“It is important for the chiefs to be in the forefront in getting tested because when the leader leads by example it becomes easy for his/her subjects to follow,” said Nkhulambe, adding that healthy subjects build a strong Kingdom.

The Chief further commended the non-governmental organization for considering testing people in her area whom she said sometimes lack such opportunities due to their daily schedules.

Added Nkhulambe: “Due to unawareness of their HIV statuses people in my area have been accusing each other of having bewitched one another, a thing she said she does not believe to be true because she suspects that most of the diseases suspected to be witchcraft based could be HIV related.”

Dignitas International conducted a community based testing exercise in four villages in the immediate border with Mozambique.

Speaking in an interview, HIV and AIDS coordinator for Dignitas Trevor Makata said the exercise was overwhelmed with people who wanted to know their statuses.

“We have had a great turnout that has encouraged us to continue providing such mobile testing exercises in hard to reach areas so that people living in these areas should not consider themselves forgotten or abandoned in issues of HIV testing and counselling,” Makata explained.

The exercise which targeted 5000 community members from the area of Chief Nkhulambe saw over 600 people getting tested and counselled.

 

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