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Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Six in Ten Nigerians living with HIV are females, says NACA director

Call for Empowerment of Women Echoes on International Women’s Day Amid HIV/AIDS Concerns

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Dr. Gambo Aliyu, the Director General of the National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA), revealed that six out of ten individuals living with HIV in Nigeria are females, underscoring the urgent need for the empowerment of women in the country.

In a press statement issued on Tuesday to mark the 2024 International Women’s Day, Aliyu emphasized that young Nigerian women face a disproportionately high risk, being three times more likely to live with HIV compared to men of the same age group.

The International Women’s Day, celebrated annually on March 8, carries the official United Nations theme, ‘Invest in women: Accelerate progress,’ which highlights the imperative of gender equality, women’s empowerment, and their rights to healthier lives.

Aliyu remarked, “Investing in women is not just a financial commitment, it’s an investment in the sustainable progress of our societies. When we empower women, we create a transformative effect that positively impacts families, communities, and the nation as a whole.”

He reiterated NACA’s dedication to empowering women and girls in the fight against HIV/AIDS, emphasizing the importance of inclusive policies, comprehensive healthcare access, and education to enable informed decisions regarding sexual and reproductive health.

Aliyu expressed gratitude to individuals, organizations, and partners contributing to the advancement of women’s rights and the global HIV/AIDS response, calling for continued collaboration to ensure a future where every woman can live free from the burden of HIV/AIDS.

According to NACA estimates, approximately 1.8 million individuals are living with HIV in Nigeria, with around 1.63 million already receiving lifesaving Antiretroviral Therapy.

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