Uganda launches HIV/AIDS campaign

The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS congratulated Uganda President Yoweri Museveni and First Lady Janet Kaguta Museveni on Thursday for their commitment to fight HIV/AIDS.

Museveni was commended for his commitment to encourage the Ugandan people to know their HIV status. In an effort to lead by example, the President publicly took an HIV test at the Kiswa Health Centre in Kampala, Uganda, at an anti-AIDS campaign before government officials, community members and the press.

"President Museveni and First Lady Museveni are leading by example," UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé said. "I am sure their bold leadership will propel Uganda back to the forefront of the world AIDS response."

At the event, Ugandan health officials offered care packages, treatment and support to any persons infected with HIV/AIDS. President Museveni encouraged all Ugandans to get tested at the event and also to take precautions against contracting HIV, which includes avoiding risky sexual behavior.

Uganda's new HIV testing campaign seeks to reach 15 million people in Uganda by the end of 2014. While it is reported that 557,000 people living with HIV in Uganda receive treatment, it is estimated that 240,000 do not. The campaign seeks to give all persons infected with HIV/AIDS access to antiretroviral medication.

At the event, pregnant women, religious leaders, cultural leaders, members of parliament, executive government official and the ministers of Uganda joined President Museveni by getting tested for HIV.