By Felix Andrew
MTWARA rural legislator, Hawa Ghasia (CCM) has requested the government to enact a law that would compel male to circumcise in order to reduce the risks of acquiring the deadly HIV –Aids.
Speaking in Dodoma during Parliamentary question and answer session, the MP said male circumcision reduces the possibility of HIV infection.
“We understand that uncircumcised male are at great risk of acquiring HIV Aids and other communicable diseases, why do not the government issue an order to compel them?, she queried .
Responding, the Deputy Minister for Health, Social Development, Gender, Elderly and Children, Dr Hamis Kigwangala, said the government cannot issue such an order because circumcision is like any other treatment which need patient consent.
Deputy Minister for Health, Social Development, Gender, Elderly and Children, Dr Hamis Kigwangala
If a patient has agreed to be circumcised then there is no problem, the government cannot issue such an order, he said.
However, Dr Kigwangala asked married women to talk to their partners on how they can do on circumcision exercise.
He noted that there are scientific evidences proving that medical male circumcision reduces the risk of acquiring HIV by 60 percent
Few years ago, Tanzanian government embarked on a large-scale voluntary male circumcision programme aimed at reducing the HIV risk of men and boys in areas of the country with low levels of male circumcision.
The programme which targeted boys aged 10 – 34 years aimed to reach 2.8 million men and boys within the next five years.
The UN World Health Organization recommends male circumcision as one of the tools for HIV prevention, alongside counselling and testing, promotion of safer sex, treatment of sexually transmitted infections and condom use.
An estimated 70 percent of Tanzanian men are circumcised, according to government surveys, but prevalence varies from region to region.