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07.05.2005 Regional News

HIV/AIDS, number one cause of deaths in Wassa West

By GNA

Tarkwa, May 7, GNA - The Wassa West District Assembly has held its first ordinary meeting at Tarkwa with a call on opinion leaders and stakeholders to do lot more to check the spread of HIV/AIDS pandemic in the district.

Addressing members, Mr Emmanuel Kwesi Ayensu, the district Chief Executive noted that reports from health institutions indicate that it is fast becoming the number one cause of deaths in Wassa West District. Mr Ayensu said although the national prevalence rate is reducing, the same could not be said about the district as the prevalence rate is on the increase.

He said many factors accounted for this and notable among them were the influx of migrants as a result of galamsey activities and resistance to change of behaviour to march the educational efforts currently going on.

Mr. Ayensu therefore charged the members not to relent on their efforts but continue to do a lot more to educate the people to reduce the spread of the disease adding, "as opinion leaders and stakeholders in the fight against the pandemic, we do not have to relent on our efforts to reduce the spread of the pandemic because we still have a lot to do."

He said the Ghana Aids Commission through the Wassa West district has supported 16 organisations in the district but a look at the magnitude of the HIV/AIDS problem shows there is still a lot more to be done.

Mr Ayensu therefore, proposed for one Community-Based Organisation (CBO) in each community to help solve some of the problems. Touching on education, The DCE said the district recorded an improvement in last year's BECE examination as it placed 28 out of the 110 districts as against 39 in 2003.

He said the necessary structures would be put in place to ensure that the district would be among the top 10 in the country and cases of schools scoring zero per cent would be a thing of the past.

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