Saturday, 1 December 2007

'World Aids Day' Rant

Attention! About 22.5 million people living with HIV are in Sub-Sahara Africa


Yes, and Indonesia has the fastest growing rate of HIV epidemic

Oh my goodness! What are we going to do?

Take the figures with a pinch of salt of course. Though the said statistics come from a very reputable body – the Almighty UN – it still leaves behind a trail of unanswered questions. First of all how do they collate the statistics? Hands up, I admit many African countries will not win a gong for organisation. If anything, we might be the antithesis of organisation. So where do they harvest their statistics about Aids in Africa/Asia from? They drop into every hospital I suppose counting HIV patients. That’s if the hospital even keeps proper records.

So if you talk about record keeping, it’s a big no- no, then how do they get their statistics?

I am a bit wary of people who present you with convenient sounding figures without verifying their sources. Or maybe its mystery is wrapped in its surreptitiousness.

Happy commemoration!

What is there to commemorate?

Don’t tell me you’re so ignorant. Never heard of World Aids Day?

Oh, that. Well I’m having second thoughts about the whole thing.


Because when they say ‘World’ Aids Day I honestly can’t tell which world they’re referring to. At least that’s the impression I get reading through the various articles on offer from media organisations. In their books the ‘World’ falls into two categories. The first category is the world which is the epicentre of devastation, suffering and dysfunctional systems (South Africa, Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia appeared in most news reports – since when did the world shrink to these regions?)
In the second category you have organisations mainly from North America and Western Europe taking the recalcitrant HIV bull by the horns. They are the ones fighting to raise awareness and pushing for the availability of drugs. So honestly, I think December 1st should be renamed. World Aids Day is surely not a befitting appellation.

What are your suggestions?

Since it is a case of the developing world being the 'suffering one' and the developed world the 'saviour' churning out initiatives to save the dying world. Maybe we could try America/Europe come to the Aid of HIV-stricken Africa/Asia Day.

That sound’s too long and clumsy. Something more sensational might be fitting


Come on! Keep the sarcasm out of it

Okay okay let’s have an African Malaria Day instead


Food for thought. I won’t elaborate on it.

Isn’t it funny how people can pull out a few statistics and conveniently tuck away the rest?

What do you mean?

You know I was telling you earlier how the World Aids Day focuses on developing regions.


A little mole told me that the developed world have their share of woes

I like a bit of gossip, indulge me.

Hum, it’s ironic but I heard The rate of new cases of HIV/Aids in the UK is one of the highest in the European Union


Yes and the UK has the third highest rate of new infections behind Estonia and Portugal. Sadly though they can still come out self righteous by blaming it on the black African community and gay men

Why am I not surprised? I noticed feature articles commemorating World Aids Day were mainly centred on black faces

True, but I won’t let them off lightly. The little mole also tells me UK has the highest rate of teenage pregnancy in Western Europe. Do you know there have even been proposals for school girls aged between 12 and 13 to get vaccinated against cervical cancer


Really. Simply put, no one bags the blame for HIV. We are all accomplices. So let's have more equitable reports.

Well spoken, friend, well spoken.

So I’ll end on this note

World Aids Day is a reminder once again of media imperialism. Those who have the means dictate the news agenda

World Aids Day is a reminder once again of McDonaldisation. A country says from December 1st 1988 we will commemorate Aids, not malaria or any other killer diseases, and the ‘world’ follows suit

World Aids Day flags up globalisation. The ever shrinking world growing more and more homogeneous. But concomitantly the chasm between the have’s and have not’s widens.

But I know there’s more to this issue than my simplistic rant explores. All the same, it’s World Aids Day, let’s commemorate!


  1. I think differently.
    HIV/AIDS is a global problem with a great potential to decimate world populations and needlessly reduce the wealth of nations. We need not be economists to appreciate that the resources expended on AIDS carriers and patients can be alternatively utilised on other problems if AIDS is eradicated. And in all these the poorer nations are more adversely affected.
    Regarding authenticity of data, I did speak with a medic some time ago who informed that developing nations AIDS figures are projected from accurate records of the 'carrier status' of pregnant women attending hospitals. This would even suggest an understatement since studies show that teenagers and young single adults are more likely to indulge in unsafe conducts capable of infecting them with AIDS, and this class has not been included in the projections.
    I do not perceive a messaiah complex posture from the west in this regard, and the effort to educate all on avoidance and control measures should be encouraged.

  2. mkjn has a point but, as the writer rightly mentioned, world aids day shouldn't concentrate on africa/asia alone. it's about 'equitable reporting'

  3. This article was well written. Let me first say this; anyone living in the west believes what they see on T.V. and I can guarantee you. "Ain't no white aids faces on the aids pictures baby!!!"

    As for the statistics, with the disorganization of Africa, who knows? It may be smaller or even bigger than what is reported.

    The point is that the messiah complex is real. It's another attempt of western neo-colonization. Controlling other races by painting creped images of who we are.

    That being said, I must not forget to be grateful to those who have contributed financially towards the epidemic. If I am right I believe most financial donors are from the west.

  4. Don't mind them really, my sister. Anything that is good is from Euro-America, but when it is bad, it is Africa-Asia! But no matter how the truth is twisted, what is true is just true.

    Having said this I must commend them for the effort at checking the spread of AIDS. The only thing is they should not pretend that they do not have it so that their people may also benefit from this their Largesse!! Moreso so that their youth will be equally wary of AIDS scare!!!

  5. But how about "World Hunger Day"? You may agree with me that hunger is a greater killer in the world today than AIDS or malaria. (Don't remind me that we already have World Food Day). All the same, kudos to the donors towards fight against HIV/AIDS. For our journalists, we should be a bit balanced when we show pictures of victims of HIV/AIDS on pages of newspapers, so that we do not interpret it as a racial issue.

  6. Please can someone tell mkjn that hunger and malaria kills more than ten times compared to hiv / AIDS in Africa. In fact malaria kills more Africans that HIV / AIDS; why no malaria day?

    I think the West is interested in the HIV / AIDS propoganda for one main reason. They want to stop Africans from being AIDS "exporters" to Western nations but they have forgotten so quickly that HIV / AIDS emanated from the Western Countries.

    As for figures used in estimating the AIDS figure, I can assure you that here in Nigeria, the hospital does not have even accurate figures on patients not to talk of pregnant women. I challenge any doubting Thomas to visit any of the Government hospitals in Nigeria and see if they find any such records.

    Concerning donours all coming from the West, I think time has reached when the "beggers" will have some choice; let them donate more towards eradication of poverty and malaria and then HIV / AIDS- priority in that order.