Dodoma- A three-day symposium was held (June 20, 21, and 23, 2018) on the role of leaders in attaining the 90-90-90 targets for HIV in Tanzania by 2020. The symposium was prepared by the Parliamentary Committee on HIV/AIDS in close collaboration with the National Council for People Living with HIV/AIDS in Tanzania (NACOPHA) which coordinated CSO stakeholders including T-MARC Tanzania. The event was conducted just after the national launch of the HIV Test and Treat Campaign “Furaha Yanga.”
The symposium explored avenues for a collective approach by Members of Parliament, as leaders, and identify their roles in the fight against HIV/AIDS in their constituencies. During the first day, a panel discussion was held in Msekwa Hall. Panelists included the Prime Minister of the United Republic of Tanzania, Hon. Kassim Majaliwa Majaliwa (MP), Hon. Job Y. Ndugai (MP), the Speaker of the National Assembly and Mr. Andy Karas from USAID. The panel was moderated by Dr. Ayub Ryoba, Director General for the Tanzania Broadcasting Corporation (TBC). Ministers, MPs, representatives from a number of NGOs and CSOs that deals with HIV/AIDS and other related issues. The panel discussion was preceded by a short documentary on HIV/AIDS in Tanzania in order to provide the setting for discussion.
The Prime Minister said that the government through TACAIDS is implementing a strategy to meet the 90-90-90 targets. The government has made great efforts in ensuring that most health facilities can test for HIV. The challenge is that men are reluctant to test, and measures must be made to address this issue.
The Speaker said the Parliament has formed a specific committee to deal with HIV/AIDS issues. He said Tanzania parliament is the only Parliament in East and Central Africa to have Parliamentary Committee that is designated for HIV/AIDS issues only. He also acknowledged the support the Committee gets from the government and more especially from the Office of the Prime Minister. He said MPs are central in achieving the 90-90-90 goal as they can make it a daily agenda whenever they are conducting meetings in their constituencies.
The USAID Mission Director Mr. Andy Karas, appreciated the efforts done by the Development partners and that the American government is willing to support efforts in the fight against HIV/AIDS and now in the goal to achieve 90-90-90 by 2020.