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AIDS Anal Afr. 2000 Feb-Mar;10(5):10.

Kenya calls AIDS a national disaster -- but vetoes condoms.

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The top leader of Kenya has finally recognized that AIDS is a national disaster, but refuses to encourage condom use. Statistics have shown estimates of more than half a million deaths because of AIDS. In a speech made by President Daniel arap Moi on AIDS during the national seminar in November 1999, he announced the creation of a National AIDS Control Council to coordinate the fight against the disease. He stated that AIDS is not just a serious threat to social and economic development, it is a real threat to human existence itself and every effort must be made to bring the problem under control during the AIDS awareness symposium. On the other hand, activists commented that even though the president announced the effects of AIDS, he refused to combat the problem to the fullest. Furthermore, estimates are that 2 million out of 30 million Kenyans are infected with HIV, infection rates are doubling every month, and 500 deaths are occurring daily. The measure taken will only be through a free airtime on state radio and television for AIDS awareness broadcasts, and AIDS education will be implemented in all schools and colleges in January 2000. Despite these criticisms, the president said that the classes would be based on culturally acceptable moral values, while adding that it would be improper to encourage the use of condoms.

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