Neteral Research: Adopting the Law to Fight the Spread of HIV/AIDS in Africa

The HIV/AIDS epidermic is still a dilemma in many African lives and across the globe. Certain legal measures have been taken by the western world to fight against the wide spread of HIV in gay communities like Canada, and has largely resulted in the reduced spread of HIV. It is estimated that there are about 33 million people living with HIV/AIDS worldwide, about 60% of this population lives in Africa. Although Africa has been quite reluctant in adopting legal measures to fight against the wide spread of HIV, several West African countries of Mali, Sierra Leone, Niger, Guinea and Guinea Bissau  have aready adopted effective legal measures to eliminate the spread of the virus. Under the new law, anyone who knowingly infects another with HIV/AIDS, will be convicted and charged as the law requires.

In Mali and Niger, a woman can be criminally charged for not taking the necessary steps to prevent HIV transmission to her unborn baby. In Uganda and Rwanda the law is not yet passed, but in certain situations these laws are being used to pass jugdement. In many developed countries like the USA, Germany, and Austrialia, laws against the spread of HIV/AIDS are already enacted and the punishements are severe. In Canada for instance, if one is found guilty, the courts on several ocassions have convicted the charged on first degree murder and many  are serving life sentences. And as a result this has led to an effective drop of new HIV infections.

The western part of Africa has taken the lead with 12 countries having already established drastic law measures against the spread of HIV/AIDS. A minimal decrease in the spread of HIV is being witnessesed. Although these new laws are being adopted and enforced, these countries are facing major problems, and many people are against the established laws. Those already living with the virus perceive the new laws as a way of discriminating against them. Although in the late 1990s and the early 2000s, there was a recorded reduction in the spread of HIV in Africa, especially in Uganda and Malawi, recent studies show that the tables have turned, and more and more people are becoming infected. During the pass five years, people have been reluctant in taking effective measures to prevent themselves against the spread of  HIV, and as a result more and more new inffections are recorded each year. In Uganda about 11o,694 new infections are registred each year, and about 804,4671 are registered in Rwanda while about 150,645 in Malawi.

However, these new laws came with challenges that still contribute to the wide spread of HIV and AIDS, which may include domectic violence, poverty, polygamy as a lifestyle, limited effective health care when it comes to prevention of mother to child tranmission. Most of the population in Africa live in rural areas which are poorly facilitated with matters concerning health. This results to giving birth in improper places like homes or on the road sides on their way to the health centre. The frequent absence of condom supplies on the local markets is also very common.

Until the visible problems are carefully addressed, the effective results of such good laws will still remain a big challenge in a continent were the majority of its natives are surviving on less than a dollar a day, with the highest illiteracy rate in the world and where effective democracy is scarcily practiced.



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