Friday, December 11, 2009

Full Blown and It Could Have Been Avoided

After watching a documentary entitled "The Age of AIDS", I'm left quite depressed but also flabbergasted at the failure of South African goverment since 1994 to tackle the issue of the epidemic.
Nelson Mandela did very little to address it during his presidency owed to the fact that little was still known of the virus at the time. It was still much of a myth that many believed only affected those overseas. Namely white male homosexuals in the USA. Not the migrant mine workers, prostitutes in "mine brothels" and wives and girlfriends of these men. It is believed that this is where the virus boomed.
So while goverment paid more attention to uniting the nation after the end of the apartheid era, this was mainly ignored. With the new administration still under ANC rule, Thabo Mbeki only sought to worsten an already deepening problem by denying that HIV causes AIDS and by stating that the "toxic" aspect of anti retro viral drugs should limit them from being given to patients. The result of this was a boom in mother to child infections. Imagine. All the kids born in that period whose mothers were unfortunate enough to have contracted HIV could have been spared the chance of living with the virus themselves. But the president chose to ignore the crisis at hand. Sad.
Well now for the results...South Africa has the highest infection rate in the world. And the president we have now seems to think that all you have to do to make the virus go away is take a shower! And that it is absolutely fine to have more than one marriage partner (ONLY if you're a MAN) I've heard him sing "Mshini Wami" (translation: bring my machine gun) more times than I've heard him talk about the importance of safe sex. On top of that, there is a violence and crime epidemic. I (very sarcastically) wonder why??

Well it's plain to see now isn't it. The tragedy of this nation lies for the most part in the inability of a post-apartheid government. Only concerned with power.

No comments: