Teso leaders in initiative to tackle HIV/AIDS

 Health action for women in vulnerable communities
Women waiting to receive health services at a health centre in Amuru district, in Northern Uganda (Photo: UNDP Uganda)

Fifty local leaders have formed an HIV/Aids task force to coordinate efforts of health networks, local leaders, civil society, international donors and the public, in response to the condition.

It consists of representatives from each of the seven districts, cultural leaders (Emorimor) and religious leaders.

Key Highlights

  • Northern Uganda was badly hit by HIV/AIDs due to the tow decade insurgency in the region.
  • HIV/AIDs requires multi-sectoral and coordinated approach to be able to fight it.

This task force emerged out of a workshop to address challenges to HIV/Aids response in Teso. The workshop was organised by the Ministry of Local Government and Uganda Aids Committee, with support from UNDP, as part of its continuing programme to support HIV/Aids response in Teso region, an insurgency and natural disaster-affected area in Northeast Uganda.

The workshop’s aim was to deliver the reports and presentations to clarify the HIV/Aids situation in country and the region, exchange the experience and challenges between regional politicians and technical staff and to seek a way forward.

However, the participants came up with their own initiative to overcome these difficulties. Teso HIV/Aids Task Force is planned to be a regional hub of coordination, with the highest and most influential levels of leadership in the region as its members.

Mr Joseph Arwata, the Resident District Commissioner in Katakwi district, strongly supported the initiative, saying, “HIV/Aids has knocked at everybody’s door. All of us have to give our contribution to fight this war against HIV/Aids.”

Since HIV/Aids affects every sector of the economy, it requires multi-sectoral and coordinated approach and a forum is one of the best ways to meet the HIV/AIDS challenge.