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The Invasion of Brainless Creatures in Africa Printable Version PRINTABLE VERSION
by Damilare, Nigeria Apr 30, 2003
Health   Opinions
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The Invasion of Brainless Creatures in Africa Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is the most deadly of all diseases. It is a very small virus that takes the life out of Man. AIDS is a result of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). HIV does not only destroy the immune system of the body, which leads to AIDS, but shatters the hopes of most African people. HIV/AIDS has transformed many ‘children into orphans with parents’, and has forcefully divorced happy couples. It makes the hopeful ones hopeless and the strong ones, weak.

Most African government never recognised HIV/AIDS as a problem and a threat to them until the early ‘90s. Many people had heard of the diseases but did not have a broad knowledge of what HIV/AIDS is all about. They were not aware of the causes, symptoms and how it could be prevented. Awareness was lagging far behind the danger. And many were exposed to the danger. Most people that suffered from the early ignorance were the people at high-risk such as the sex worker, the youths, the truck drivers that shuttle between one town to the other, sharing bed partners and the drug users (those taking harmful drugs with used syringes and needles).

More recently, the government and the people are beginning to realise the dangers behind the virus. More NGOs and the government are embarking on mass Health Education and Campaigns through the Media and the Internet. But there are more people in the rural areas like the villages and the slums that do not have an access to the aforesaid accessories. These people lack information and are one of the major agents of transmission of this brutal venereal disease. Recent surveys showed that some inhabitants of some villages believed that HIV/AIDS is a curse by the Ancestral gods of the lands. They believed that the evolution of HIV/AIDS was a result of the immoral attitude towards the illicit sex affairs in the recent days. They also believed that only a ritual process could put a stop to the devastating epidemic.

Out of the people living with HIV/AIDS in Nigeria, only few have been tested. In a street in Lagos, about 50 people were assembled, and a question was thrown into their hearings. “Let all those who have been tested of HIV/AIDS raise up their hands.” After some few seconds, only 6 hands could be seen in the air. After that, an interview was conducted and some people was asked that why haven’t they gone for the test. Some people testified that they could not go for the test out of fear, while some said it was quite expensive. Alamu, a young man of 30, said that he did not do the test because he does not want to entertain fear, which might lead to the taught that he would soon lose his life. Some people said it was not the virus that actually kills the people but it is "the fear that they would soon lose their lives" that kills.

In Nigeria and some other developing countries, people who are HIV positive are stigmatized. It would have been better if the people treat them with love and respect. But they avoid and isolate them as if HIV/AIDS is an airborne disease. As a result of this, some victims do not let out their ‘Identity’ as an HIV/AIDS victim, but try to infect others because they have been hurt. Ada, a 17 years old Nursing student was expelled from school when she was tested HIV positive. Many of her friends left her and those who stood with her were isolated. She suffered mentally and committed suicide. The people’s attitude towards an HIV/AIDS victim is very bad and it helps the transfer of the virus in some ways.
In most African homes, association between Parents/Guardians and Children/Wards is not intimate when it comes to issues connected with sex. Some Parents/Guardian feel embarrassed to talk with their children on issues concerning sex. And the Children/Wards on the other hand, are always scared or ashamed to ask their Parents/Guardian about the issues bothering them.

As a result of the economic situation in most developing countries, many Parents/Guardians go out in the morning and come back in the night. Some even stay out of their homes for weeks, in search of a better life. During their absence, the Children/Wards would have been exposed to things that can bring them closer to ” unsafe sex and the virus.” This attitude of the parents is not helping at all. It is posing the children’s lives at risk. Thus, this attitude threatens the future of Africa, the children.

As stated earlier, most African Government and NGOs are embarking on mass Health Education and Campaigns. Every Local Government in Nigeria has a Health Educator but it has not been effective enough. The aforesaid bodies should try to stretch forwards to the inaccessible areas. And more materials such as pamphlets written in their native language should be distributed to the people. The future of Africa has to be protected. The future of every land resides in the children’s lives. The Parents and the Teachers are the nearest people to the children, particularly the teenagers. They should be duly informed. The parents and the teachers should realise the dangers behind the negligence of the children. Films and shows that stimulate the teenagers’ mind towards sex at their tender age should be curbed.

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Writer Profile

Just like my name Damilare, depicts, I have been set free from all odds of life.
Most of my works are based on Africa. I love Africa so much. My love for this great land is not based its hypocritical admiration by some people. But based on the realization of her past mistakes and to make Her great in future.
I was born and grew up in a tough part of the world. My family is a free type where everyone chooses what he/she wants. This has made me liberal in my thoughts.
I get happy when I read works of Great Black people, especially their works on pan-Africanism.
My regret in life is that; I have not read the works of Marcus Garvey and Du Bois!

Great, comprehensive article!
aclam | Apr 30th, 2003
I especially like the personal anecdotes, such as the story of Ngozi. Keep up the good work!

Great, comprehensive article!
aclam | Apr 30th, 2003
I especially like the personal anecdotes, such as the story of Ngozi. Keep up the good work!

What a fine article
rotimi Olawale | Sep 5th, 2003
The article was made real by the stories you added, keep it up...i will love to meet you someday

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