Donors Question Zambia’s Commitment to the Fight Against AIDS
Foreign donors, from whom the Zambian government is seeking $559 million over the next three years, on Friday questioned the government's commitment to fighting AIDS after the government bowed to pressure from religious groups to withdraw a "hard-hitting" awareness campaign, Reuters reports. Donors wanted to know whether the withdrawal of the campaign, which featured "graphic" advertisements and "urg[ed]" Zambians to use condoms, marked a "government shift" in AIDS policy, Health Minister Enock Kavindele said. The Catholic Church and the Christian Council of Zambia complained that the advertisements were "in bad taste and appeared to condone sex if condoms were used." The Zambian Post "denounced" the withdrawal in an editorial and accused the church groups of hypocrisy. Kavindele said that the ads would be "modified" over the weekend and would return, possibly as early as next week (Esipisu, Reuters, 1/12).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.