UNAIDS Takes Fight Against AIDS To 2015 AFCON

The global commitment towards the fight against AIDS will again be demonstrated at this year’s African Cup of Nations to be held in Equatorial Guinea.

Following a “Protect the Goal” campaign Memorandum of Understanding which was signed between UNAIDS Executive Director, Michel Sidibé and the President  of  the  Confederation  of  African  Football at the 2013 African Cup of Nations (AFCON 2013,) in South Africa, the Protect the Goal (PtG) campaign will be featured at the 2015 AFCON.

Michel Sidibé will be given the opportunity to participate at the opening or final of the tournament which starts on Saturday 17th January 2015. He is expected to deliver an address on the campaign and its core message at the event.

The fight seeks to achieve a 90-90-90 target; thus 90% of people living with HIV knowing their HIV status, 90% of people who know their HIV-positive status on treatment and 90% of people on treatment with suppressed viral loads by 2020 and to fast-track ending AIDS by 2030.

A new development in this regard is the Mayors’ Paris Declaration under the “AIDS in cities” which was signed earlier in December 2014 to underscore the importance of cities in the fight against HIV and ensuring and end to AIDS by 2030.

As parts of efforts to consolidate the action in Ghana ahead of the Black Stars’ participation in the continental tournament, the UNAIDS, Ghana AIDS Commission and Ministry of Youth and Sports together with the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts, the Accra Metropolitan Assembly and the Ghana Football Association will hold a joint media briefing to demonstrate their commitment towards the cause as well as promote HIV advocacy on the eve of the tournament.

Meanwhile Ghana is experiencing a decrease in the prevalence of HIV/AIDS according to a UNAIDS country report on the disease.

Jonas Nyabor

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