New MEC prioritises STI awareness

Community News

The new Northern Cape MEC of the Department of Health,  Fufe Makatong, visited Ben-del village to commemorate Repro-ductive Health Month on February 23, 2018.
Addressing the community mem-bers at the community hall, she said that people ought to have children when prepared to do so. As a result, the department is promoting dual protection approach where fertility control as well as prevention of sexual transmitted infections (STIs) is under prime advocacy to the broa-der community in the province.
“Our message as government to-day, is to make an appeal to you as communities - especially those who are still sexually active - to remain faithful to your partners and condo-mise. The youth should abstain in or-der to reduce the spread of diseases that ravage society in general.
“The fortunate part is that most of these diseases can be prevented and avoided, especially the sexually transmitted infections.
“This year's campaign is celebra-ted under the theme My health. My responsibility. Live a healthy lifestyle and use dual protection.
“A few years ago, government launched the coloured and scented male condoms, as part of our com-mitment to re-brand the choice con-doms. To date, max condoms are available at our facilities, free of charge, and this is aimed at promo-ting and increasing the use of pro-tection - particularly by younger people.
“We must not shy away from talk-ing about the realities. Let us emu-late what the late Tata Mandela stood for as he demonstrated to the entire country on how to use your personal life and that of your wider family, as examples to tackle issues affecting society in general - through education.
“At a time when one of his own sons, Makgatho Lewanika Mandela, who passed away in 2005 from HIV-related illnesses, the late Tata pub-licly called on each of us to consider
diseases like TB, cancer and STIs as normal illnesses – not something we must hide away and ignore. We are therefore calling upon you as residents, to learn from what Tata Mandela and many other fallen he-roes and heroines, including some from this area, fought for. Let us work together to fight and conquer this enemy called HIV, TB and STIs.”
She encouraged young women to take care of their health in order to deliver healthy babies. She said that the use of drugs, alcohol and mul-tiple partners put young women in the death trap.
Finally, there was an appeal that frequent visits to clinics are advis-able for the early detection of these ailments as a means of prevention control and management.