JUI-F, UNAIDS agrees to launch joint awareness drive against HIV/Aids prevention in Larkana
Karachi: One of the leading religious political party of Pakistan, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Fazl (JUI-F) and the Joint United Nations Program on HIV and AIDS (UNAIDS) have agreed to launch joint awareness drive in Larkana division of Sindh against HIV/Aids and in this regard, JUI-F would utilize the platform of mosques and seminaries under its influence in the area.
A consensus in this regard was developed during a meeting between JUI-F Chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman and Secretary General JUI-F Rashid Mehmood Soomro with top UNAIDS officials here in Karachi on the other day, JUI-F officials said on Wednesday.
A top-level UNAIDS delegation led-by its Regional Director for Asia-Pacific Eamonn Murphy, Taoufik Bakkali, UNAIDS’ Regional Adviser Strategic Information, Dr. Maria Elena G Filio Borromeo, UNAIDS Country Director for Pakistan and Afghanistan, Dr. Rajwal Khan and others met JUI-F leadership and urged them to play their role in HIV/Aids awareness in Larkana where 816 people including 672 children have been tested positive for the viral infection since April 25, 2019.
The visiting UNAIDS officials said role of religious leaders, Imams of mosques and seminary teachers was crucial in limiting the deadly outbreak and to prevent any such outbreaks in future and hoped that their collaborative efforts would yield positive results in making people aware of practices that could prevent them and their children from contracting the viral infection.
JUI-F officials said Maulana Fazlur Rehman and Maulana Rashid Mehmood Soomro assured the UNAIDS that it would cooperate with the UN agencies in creating awareness regarding HIV/Aids in Larkana where hundreds of children have been found infected with HIV, saying mosques would be used for spreading information about preventives measures.
“Spread of HIV/Aids is human issue and we are very concerned about its spread in Larkana and other parts of the country. We have already held press conferences and rallies to spread awareness about this outbreak and we are ready to work with national and international organizations to create awareness among people about this disease”, Maulana Fazlur Rehman told the visiting UNAIDS delegation.
Maulana Fazlur Rehman told the visiting UN officials that Imams of mosques in entire Larkana were guiding people through their sermons about HIV/Aids and the preventive measures they should adopt while their party was also awareness gatherings in the area where religious leaders were educating masses about the preventive measures against HIV/Aids.
Maulana Rashid Mehmood Soomro, JUI-F Secretary General urged the UN officials to press the provincial government to immediately arrange treatment of children who have been found infected with HIV during the recent outbreak and offered their unconditional cooperation to them in dealing with the menace.
It is worth mentioning here that as part of their strategy to deal with the HIV outbreak in Ratodero, UN agencies are seeking support from all the political, religious parties and the community leaders in spreading awareness about prevention from the viral infection.