Religious bodies urged to set up anti-AIDS campaign Fund

The Ashanti Regional Advocacy Team of Religious Leaders has urged religious institutions to set aside funds to support anti-HIV/AIDS campaign.

They should ensure that at least, one per cent of their annual income was used to fight the spread of the deadly disease.

Reverend Monsignor Anthony Mary Amponsah-Poku, Chairman of the Team, was addressing a day’s HIV/AIDS education durbar in Kumasi on Tuesday.

“Our ability to halt or slow new infections is dependent on a sustained multi-sectoral effort in view of the ascendancy in promiscuous lifestyles of the people.”

The programme was held under the auspices of the Christian Health Association of Ghana (CHAG) on the theme: “Reduce HIV/AIDS-related stigma and discrimination in our religious institutions.”

It was meant to help sensitize the participants on the mode of transmission, symptoms and effects of the disease.

Rev Monsignor Amponsah-Poku said all religions abhorred discrimination in every form and appealed to followers to show compassion to people living with the disease.

The seeming inaction on the part of religious leaders, he said, was unhelpful to the drive towards bringing down the infection rate.

The Most Reverend Thomas Mensah, Metropolitan Catholic Archbishop of Kumasi, underscored the need to ensure adequate supply of anti-retroviral drugs to the infected.

Maulvi Masroor Ahmad, Ashanti Regional Head of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Mission, called for the integration of HIV/AIDS educational activities in the mainstream activities of religious institutions.

Dr Kwaku Agyemang-Mensah, the Regional Minister, said it was important to strengthen anti-HIV/AIDS activities to reduce the prevalence rate.

Source: GNA

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