British pop star Elton John has donated 120 motorcycles to the government of Lesotho so that doctors and nurses can use them to treat medical emergencies in the mountains.
John had travelled to Lesotho during a tour of southern Africa with his partner David Furnish and decided to give away the bikes.
The donation was a part of the Riders for Health Programme that John funds through his organisation Elton John AIDS Foundation, which provides funding for educational programs targeted at HIV/AIDS prevention and the elimination of prejudice and discrimination against HIV/AIDS-affected individuals, and also funds programs that provide services to people living with or at risk for HIV/AIDS.
“We want to improve the transport system by bringing health care to people living in rural areas and thus making a difference in their lives,” John told the local media.
Lesotho’s Health Ministry spokesperson Tumisang Mokoai Mokoai said the programme was designed to deliver primary health care services to communities in the remote areas.
“The nurses and doctors will have transport to follow up patients in the villages to support community health workers,” he said, according to AFP.
Lesotho is one of Africa’s poorest countries and worst affected by the AIDS pandemic, with some 23 percent of the population between the ages of 15 and 49 HIV positive.