Govt urged to resolve standoff over HIV drugs

A section of religious leaders now want the Government to resolve its standoff between donor agencies that has resulted to a delay of antiretroviral drugs.

The leaders drawn from Kangeta, Igembe Central, Meru County want the government to reassure Kenyans living with HIV/AIDS of a constant supply of drugs by reducing their over-reliance on donors for the crucial medicines.

The National Independent Church of Africa (NICA) Mission Diocese (that covers the counties of Isiolo, Meru and Marsabit) Bishop Stephen Kalunyu said that the recent standoff between the government of Kenya and donor agencies was disheartening to the users, adding that such a standoff should not be witnessed in future.

The clerics called upon the national government to consider setting aside resources to purchase the crucial drugs in order to ensure that there is a constant supply of the same.

He noted that the People living with HIV/AIDS faced the uncertainty of shortage of ARVs at a time when they are also hard hit by the adverse effects of Covid-19.

He called upon the government authorities and charitable organizations to also consider embarking on a mission to provide further reliefs especially in terms of food donations or even cash transfers to the vulnerable members of the community.

Bishop Kalunyu also cautioned young people against rushing into marriages before they are ready in terms of maturity and material preparedness, amid a worrying trend of rising cases of domestic violence and people killing their spouses unnecessarily.

Archdeacon Jacob Kubai said that Kenyans who have already received the first dose of the Oxford Astrazeneca vaccine which has been approved by the government are worried that they could miss out on the second dose after India blocked exportation of the same.

He appealed to the government through its healthcare experts to consider engaging in partnerships that will enable them to produce vaccines locally, citing Rwanda as a nation that has made significant strides in that regard.


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