Dr Gambo Aliyu, the Director-General of the National Agency for Control of AIDS (NACA) says condoms are integral components in the preventive interventions essential for HIV response, Sexually Transmitted Infections (STI) and unplanned pregnancies.
Aliyu made this disclosure at a press conference to commemorate the International Condom Day, in Abuja on Friday.
The News Agency of Nigeria, (NAN) reports that International Condom Day is celebrated on Feb. 12 of every year, to raise awareness and promote the use of condoms, as preventive elements against sexually transmitted diseases.
Aliyu emphasised the need to use condoms in promoting healthy sexual activities among the people, adding that the mandate of NACA in providing oversight and coordination of the processes and stakeholders involved in national HIV response could not be over-emphasised.
“Prevention continues to be an essential element of HIV response with condoms as an integral component.
“When used correctly and consistently, condoms are highly effective in preventing Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) including HIV,” Aliyu said.
The director general, who described condom as a key component of a comprehensive HIV prevention strategy, said it was not targeted at promoting promiscuity.
He dismissed insinuations and ideations of some people about the morality question of using condoms, saying that NACA stood against all forms of promiscuity.
“We are promoting the positive use only, in terms of disease prevention and unwanted pregnancy prevention,” he said.
Aliyu reiterated the commitment of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration, to mitigating behavioural and biomedical barriers influencing the spread of HIV by ensuring effective implementation of interventions.
He said that NACA was working in synergy with the Federal Ministry of Health and development partners on national condom qualification to galvanise individual risk reduction and new HIV infections.
Also speaking, Mr Adeleye Taofeek, Prevention Programme Manager, AIDS Healthcare Foundation, said that condom use was necessary in driving an HIV free nation.
Taofeek further said that about 83 per cent of Nigerians were in the affirmative on the use of condoms, while 17 per cent were in the disaffirmation.
According to him, while some of the 83 per cent bracket, say condom is effective and reliable, the 17 per cent say it’s either morally wrong or gives no satisfaction etc.
The AHF official also emphasised the effectiveness of condom use, as well as the varieties available such as in texture and flavour.
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Source: Vanguard News