House passes HIV/Aids Bill


Parliament Tuesday passed the HIV and Aids Prevention and Management Bill after agreeing to remove two contentious provisions; compulsory testing and making it a criminal offence to transmit the virus wilfully.

Minister of Health, Atupele Muluzi, said the amended bill is focusing on making sure that authorities are able to prevent and manage the pandemic.

“The current provision is focusing on prevention and management of HIV and Aids, which will help us ensure that we are complementing efforts that are being made in management of the disease in the country,” he said


Muluzi said the criminal provision would be dealt with in the Penal Code.

Chairperson of HIV/ Aids and Nutrition Committee of Parliament, Deus Gumba, said the committee is happy that controversial provisions have been removed.

“Contentious issues were so many in terms of compulsory testing for our men in uniform, pregnant women and domestic workers. These have been removed so we have the finest law that moves with time and human rights standards,” he said


The bill includes the authority of National Aids Commission as a statutory body that facilitates management of HIV response in the country.

The bill has taken nine years before being approved by Parliament, as it was developed in 2008.

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