BOXING : UBF, UNAIDS stand together to knock out HIV

DAVID GOMBEĀ 

In a bid to end AIDS as a public health threat, UNAIDS Uganda together with Uganda Boxing Federation ( UBF), AIDS Information Center ( AIC), Uganda AIDS Commission ( UAC ) and Infectious Disease Institute ( IDI) have all joined hands to eradicate HIV in a campaign named Box HIV and AIDS out of Uganda.

At the Media launch held at Kati Kati Restaurant on Monday 26th November, Uganda Boxing Federation President Moses Muhangi in his remarks praised all organizations in this campaign for standing together to fight HIV in the country.

“We as UBF are honored that we are together with UNAIDS, AIC, UAC and IDI in the fight against HIV and AIDS. We are grateful that we are having this campaign to Box HIV and AIDS out of of the country and in Boxing.

We shall ensure that we fight together by sensitizing and creating awareness to coaches, clubs owners, administrators, Referees, Judges, Boxers and fans about HIV. “

Muhangi also thanked UNAIDS for the training bags that were offered to the Federation which he believes will help all the 35 Boxing clubs in the country.

UNAIDS country Director Dr. Karusa Kiragu called upon for multi-sectoral commitment to ensure Viral suppression.

“UNAIDS is urging multi-sectoral commitment to ensure viral suppression. This should go hand in hand with comprehensive leadership for sustainable programs, especially domestic funding.” Stated Karusa Kiragu.

On behalf of Infectious Disease Institute Dr. Kambugu Andrew called upon for unity so that the health threat of HIV and AIDS is overcome.

“We have to work and stand together to fight and overcome HIV and AIDS in the country. We don’t want to draw with this virus, we only need a win and as a Boxing fan, we need to win by knock out.”

The campaign will help in encouraging 90% or more of the UBF management know their HIV status, and have a plan to sensitize and protect their Boxers from HIV. It will also include Boxers and their fan base, but will ultimately include students in primary, Secondary and Universities.

According to the research made in 2017, men are less likely to know their HIV status, to be on treatment and to be virally suppressed. Consequently, men are twice likely to die from HIV than women. It is also believed that about 69% of men living with HIV are on treatment compared to 79% of women.

On Wednesday 28th, November sensitization activities will officially begin at Kati Kati Restaurant and end on 5th December. The major aim will be to create awareness to the opinion leaders in the Boxing sport about the seriousness of HIV and AIDS.