Gambian Official Calls for All Gambians To Be Tested for HIV
Gambian National Assembly Deputy Speaker Belinda Bidwell at the second sitting of the National Youth Parliament said that if she had the "power and authority" to do so "every Gambian would be sanctioned to go for an HIV/AIDS test," the Independent/AllAfrica.com reports. Although the country's HIV prevalence is "said to be low, there should be no room for complacency," Bidwell said, according to the Independent/AllAfrica.com. The HIV/AIDS epidemic is "gradually encroaching" within the borders of Gambia, Bidwell said, adding, "Our youth who are the cream of the society are the only people dying of it and we should start testing and ensuring that we do not acquire the disease." Bidwell, who called for all Gambians to "put pride and fear aside" and be tested for HIV, added that the Gambian government is "serious and ready to fight" HIV/AIDS but called for the "full participation of the Gambian youth" in the fight against the disease, according to the Independent/AllAfrica.com. She concluded, "We do not want Gambia to be like other African countries where the disease is making headways. Collectively we can win the battle against this terrible disease" (Njie, Independent/AllAfrica.com, 4/28).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.