President Robert Mugabe has called on youths to desist risk behaviors including premarital sex which he said puts them at risk of the deadly HIV/Aids.
Addressing Zanu PF supporters who gathered at the Matopos Research Centre for the 2017 edition of the 21st February Movement celebrations on Saturday, President Mugabe said despite government’s concerted efforts in alleviating the spread of HIV/AIDS, the youths have a vital role to play to end the pandemic.
“There are certain things that the youths have to do and not do. The world is not kind to us. The air we breathe is full of viruses and gems of all sorts…in our days, diseases like HIV are being spread from one person to the other so quickly hence they need maximum caution.
“Although the prevalence rate has declined significantly over the years, more needs to be done. Our youths need to behave in a way that will not expose them to such kinds of diseases” said Mugabe.
He said the country has lost a number of young people due to HIV adding that premarital sex among young people and multiple sexual partner fuels the spread of the virus.
“We lost lots of young men who would have been so vital to the economy. These are people who are so dear to our hearts. We appeal to the Ministry of Health and Childcare to continue relaying the message to our youths on the dangers of engaging multiple sexual partners. We however, applaud them for their efforts which have seen a continued decline in the prevalence rate.
“We thank them for educating our young people on the need to take precaution when it comes to matters of their sexual health,” Mugabe added.
The HIV prevalence rate in the country has declined over the years from 24% in 2005 to the current 12, 6% due to concerted efforts from the government and development partners.Zimbabwe is rated among the best countries in terms of response mechanisms following the introduction of Aids levy.