FACT: Up to the end of 2007, 50% of the Ugandan men who admitted (under the assurance of confidentiality and non-disclosure) that they were gay tested positive for HIV. But 43% of those who tested positive never returned for their confirmatory results.
FACT: There are at least 200 gay men and women in Kampala, Uganda’s capital city, alone. Based on that number, and the 50% infection rate suggested above, at least 100 of them are HIV+.
FACT: A significant fraction of the gay men in Kampala and Uganda that we know about also dabble in heterosexual sex because they are married or have girlfriends and are having sex with men on the down low (DL).
WHAT EDUCATED CONCLUSION CAN ONE MAKE FROM THE ABOVE?
Every gay man in Kampala has had sex with someone who is carrying the HIV virus – knowingly or otherwise!!!!
What is even really scary is that nearly all of the roughly 100 infected gay boys in Kampala don’t know it or have chosen to ignore their status. Many of our boys are out there catching all sorts of predatory illnesses and the real problem is not being addressed.
Forget all Minister Nsaba Buturo’s well publicized rants against gays or Pastor Sempa’s self-serving vituperatives against homosexuality. The Ugandan (and by implication African) gay community has a ticking HIV/Aids time bomb in its midst and it needs to be addressed before it explodes into a raging crisis. The Government has tacitly indicated that it is not interested in the rights of the gay community so the Ugandan gay community has to take care of itself by making HIV awareness as important as self-awareness.
If you have just been diagnosed with HIV, The Body provides a great resource as to what you need to do to deal with your new reality.Excerpts:
The [HIV] test means that you are infected with the virus that causes AIDS, the human immuno deficiency virus (HIV). Even though there is no cure for HIV disease, there are many new treatments that help keep the disease under control. Many people with HIV infection live a long and healthy life. No one can predict how long it may take to develop any symptoms of HIV disease.When you first find out that you have HIV, you’ll need to adjust to this change in your life. Family members or friends might be able to help you, or you could talk with a counselor or social worker. Take your time and don’t feel that you have to tell everyone right away about your HIV status. Then start taking the next steps:· Learn more about HIV disease· Keep track of your immune system· Decide how you want to deal with HIV. …