“This is the first ever sensitization forum on the East Africa HIV Prevention and Management Act since its enactment. East African countries have varied gaps in their National HIV laws. However we are fortunate to have this law which can be used to complement our National HIV laws. This forum therefore provides an opportunity for us to comprehend the provisions of the Act and advocate for a rights based approach to service delivery in East Africa.”Bwijo A. Bwijo, UNDP Tanzania Program Specialist on HIV and AIDS.
On 12 – 13 April 2017, KELIN conducted a two day ground-breaking regional stakeholders’ sensitization forum on the provisions of the East African HIV, Prevention and Management Act. The forum, which was conducted at the Eka Hotel, in Nairobi County, is one among the activities under the three year Africa Regional HIV Grant, financed by the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.
The objectives of the forum were three pronged. First, to enhance the participants’ understanding on the provisions of the EAC HIV and AIDS Prevention and Management Act. Second, to establish a platform for comparative analysis on the provisions of the EAC HIVAct vis-à-vis the national HIV laws. Lastly, fostering regional and in-country partnerships for increased advocacy around the EAC HIV Act.
The forum was attended by 43 participants from Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania including communities of Persons Living with HIV, representatives of key populations, law enforcement officers, lawyers, representatives of the various National AIDS Control Councils, health care workers and human rights institutions, Ministry of Health officials from Nairobi County Government, EAC Health officials, various civil society organizations and development partners.
At the end of the meeting, participants committed to taking forward a number of action points with regard to implementation of the EAC HIV and AIDS Prevention and Management Act:
- Delegates from Tanzania committed in-country sensitization and implementation of the EAC HIV law. This would ensure adoption of human rights approach in HIV National responses and domestication of EAC HIV law.
- Delegates from Uganda committed to national advocacy on the provisions of the EAC HIV Act and integration of the Act in national HIV programs. These efforts would culminate to aligning their national HIV laws to the EAC HIV Act.
- Delegates from Kenya committed to creating an enabling legal environment for access to HIV and TB services for persons living with HIV and key populations.
KELIN intends to build on to this important forum, to push for future in-country advocacy initiatives. The focus will be on scaling up a rights based approach to service delivery for PLHIV and key population.
To contribute to the discussions on this forum, follow KELIN on our social media platforms: Twitter: @KELINkenya using these hash tags: #EAC_HIVACT Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/kelinkenya
For more information, contact:
Programme Officer, Key & Affected Populations
Kenya Legal and Ethical Issues Network on HIV/AIDS (KELIN)
4th Floor, Somak Building, Mombasa Road
Tel +254202515790; Cell +254708389870