Saltpond (C/R), Sept 8, GNA - The Deputy Minister of Information, Stephen Asamoah Boateng has cautioned the youth against adopting care-free attitudes that led to the spread of the HIV/AIDS pandemic.
Mr Asamoah Boateng expressed regret that although the Government and other stakeholders had given sufficient education on the devastating nature of the pandemic, this had not led to a change in lifestyles.
He was speaking at Saltpond, during an HIV/AIDS forum organised by FED Kastle Promotion, a local non-governmental organisation (NGO). Mr Asamoah Boateng expressed the need for persistent counseling of the youth to stem the spread of the disease.
The prevalent rate of HIV/AIDS in the Central Region, increased from 2.6 per cent in 2002 to 5.4 per cent in 2003.
Mr Asamoah Boateng asked, what will be the use of Government efforts to improve on the living conditions of the people if they are dying from AIDS?
Mr Robert Quainoo-Arthur, District Chief Executive for Mfantseman, asked parents to ensure that their children wore decent dresses in order not to attract sexual attention.
Mr Jojo Bruce Quansah, the parliamentary candidate of the National Democratic Congress, for Mfantseman West, asked the youth to abstain from premarital sex, while couples must also be faithful to their partners.
Ms Janet Ennin, the District Community Development Officer, called on the people not to scorn people living with AIDS (PLWAS). Mr Francis Ejaaku Donkoh, the Executive Director of the NGO, appealed to the Government to involve all district hospitals in the dispensation of the anti-retroviral drugs to the PLWAS.