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This resource is hosted by the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory, but was compiled and authored by Padraig O’Malley. It is the product of almost two decades of research and includes analyses, chronologies, historical documents, and interviews from the apartheid and post-apartheid eras.

Aids experts condemn SA minister

More than 60 international experts on HIV/Aids have called for the resignation of the South African health minister because of her stance on Aids.

Manto Tshabalala-Msimang tells those with HIV to eat garlic and beetroot.

In a letter sent to President Thabo Mbeki, the academics called the government's health policy "disastrous and pseudo-scientific".

"Many people [in South Africa] are dying unnecessarily" because they cannot get Aids drugs, the letter says.

South Africa is one of the countries worst affected by Aids, with some 5.5m people with HIV.

'Embarrassment'

"To have as health minister a person who now has no international respect is an embarrassment to the South African government," say the experts.

They include 1975 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine David Baltimore and Robert Gallo, the developer of the first HIV blood test and co-discoverer of HIV as the cause of Aids.

They declared that Anti-Retroviral drugs (ARVs) were the only medication currently available that could alleviate the consequences of HIV infection.

Three years ago, the government promised to give ARVs to some 380,000 people but so far fewer than half this number are being treated, the letter says.

At last month's international Aids conference in Toronto, United Nations special envoy for Aids in Africa Stephen Lewis said South Africa promoted a "lunatic fringe" attitude to HIV/Aids.

The South African government has said it will change the way its Aids message is communicated.

But Mr Mbeki has rejected previous calls to sack Ms Tshabalala-Msimang.

Story from BBC NEWS:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/hi/africa/5319680.stm
Published: 2006/09/06 10:58:03 GMT
© BBC MMVII

This resource is hosted by the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory, but was compiled and authored by Padraig O’Malley. Return to the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory site.