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Nigerian health minister says bisexuals “pose a challenge” to HIV efforts

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  1. Intrigued as to why the Nigerians minister considers bisexual men to be a particular issue … none of the reports I have seen give any evidential reason for this (unsurprisingly!) …

    Comparing it to the Ghanaian education ministers comments last week that MSM were not a problem that could not be overcome – it would appear bisexuals are being deemed with a particularly sinister view in Nigeria …

  2. Pastor Rich N. Fat 22 Dec 2011, 2:33pm

    I doubt they pose as great a threat to HIV efforts as the Nigerian government itself and its criminalisation of all stable gay relationships.

  3. In a country where religious dogma trumps human rights, Nigeria’s Health Minister is releasing derogatory stats at this particular time to nurture the hatred of homosexuals and bi-sexuals.

    Thus, the House of Representatives would have a scientific reason to pass homophobic Senator Domingo’s Obende’s anti-gay Bill presently making its way through Parliament.

    Homophobia aside, why else would the Nigerian Parliament set the country on a path directly against the global trend to enforce the human rights of all persons?

    What a waste of Parliamentary time and resources.

    There is an urgent need to raise the level of critical thinking and scientific literacy in Nigeria and to campaign against child labour, female genital mutilation, ritual killing, witchcraft, caste discrimination, sharia law and the subjugation of women.

    These are horrible and primitive customs that really do harm human beings and society while private same-sex behavior between consenting adults is harmless.


  4. With the threat of a 14-year prison hanging over them, I doubt that homosexuals and bi-sexuals will approach HIV clinics now.

    How will this stem the tide of HIV infection in Nigeria?

    This is one more example of the confusion caused by religious intoxication.

    Shame on Nigeria.

  5. Ignorance and a lack of education is the biggest factor when looking at the rate of HIV infections. And unfortunately ignorance is endemic at the very top of NIgeria’s government who decide policy in regard to these issues. It’s a tragedy.

  6. Janet Lameck 22 Dec 2011, 5:25pm

    He needs to read the latest literature, straight heterosexual males/females are the largest group of HIV infected people!

  7. Another Hannah 22 Dec 2011, 7:50pm

    Bisexuals say nigerian health minister poses a challenge to HIV efforts…..

  8. I’m coming to the point now when I see ‘Nigerian’ in the headline and I wonder if it’s even worth reading the article, since I know it’s going to throw up yet another depressing example of backward stupidity.

  9. How is HIV transmitted in Nigeria?

    There are three main HIV transmission routes in Nigeria:

    1. Heterosexual sex.

    Approximately 80-95 percent of HIV infections in Nigeria are a result of heterosexual sex.

    Factors contributing to this include a lack of information about sexual health and HIV, low levels of condom use, and high levels of sexually transmitted diseases.

    Women are particularly affected by HIV; in 2009 women accounted for 56 percent of all adults aged 15 and above living with the virus.

    2. Blood transfusions.

    HIV transmission through unsafe blood accounts for the second largest source of HIV infection in Nigeria.

    Not all Nigerian hospitals have the technology to effectively screen blood and therefore there is a risk of using contaminated blood.


  10. The Nigerian Federal Ministry of Health have responded by backing legislation that requires hospitals to only use blood from the National Blood Transfusion Service, which has far more advanced blood-screening technology.

    3. Mother-to-child transmission.

    Each year around 57,000 babies in Nigeria are born with HIV.

    It is estimated that 360,000 children are living with HIV in the country, most of whom became infected from their mothers.

    This has increased from 220,000 in 2007.

    A number of small-scale studies have indicated towards a rise in HIV prevalence among injecting drug users.

    Although HIV transmission through injecting drug use is not one of the main transmission routes, it appears to be accounting for an increasing number of new HIV infections.


  11. References:

    UNGASS (2010) – ‘Country Progress Report – Nigeria’ Egesie J. & Egesie E. (2011) – Seroprevalence of HIV Among Blood Donors in Jos – Nigeria’ Nigeria Exchange (2008) – Ministry of Health alerts Nigerians to the transfusion of unsafe blood in hospitals.’ UNAIDS (2010) – ‘UNAIDS report on the global AIDS epidemic.’ The World Bank (2008) – West Africa HIV/AIDS Epidemiology and Response Synthesis.’


    I would be curious to know more about the 2010 behavioral surveillance group (quoted by the Daily Trust) who neglected to give the total picture of the HIV epidemic in Nigeria.

  12. GingerlyColors 23 Dec 2011, 6:30am

    What is it about African countries and HIV/AIDS, Nigeria in particular. The prevalence of the virus on the continent shows that AIDS is not a ‘gay disease’, it can affect anyone and therefore I do not see AIDS as a gay problem – it is everyones’ problem and the safe sex message must get through to everyone.
    As for their suggestion that HIV/AIDS has become more prevalent amongst gay and bisexual people in Nigeria, how do they know in a country where people would be too scared to declare their sexuality for fear of being persecuted or arrested?

  13. Dan Filson 23 Dec 2011, 4:49pm

    Thank you for that map of Africa showing me where Nigeria is. How could I have known where Nigeria was without it. Next time you run a story on China, no doubt you will put up a map of, well, China.

  14. David chukwuka 27 Dec 2011, 10:05am

    To start, am a Nigerian. Bravo! Mr health minister, now you give the confused paliarment a health reason to wrap up the debate. I doubt that statistics because just over a hundred of gay/bisexual ppl are out in the country. And its there fault that gay people are infected with HIV since they force us to lead double lives by forcing us have sex with this ruthless heterosexuals. As a gay , its terrible cos just 4 d sake of not bin rejected, am obliged to hav sex with gals i hav no feelings for, its pathetic. Probably i’ll get married to a lady, and heaven knows what kind of husband i’ll be to my wife.. God help us.

  15. “Nothing optional—from homosexuality to adultery—is ever made punishable unless those who do the prohibiting (and exact the fierce punishments) have a repressed desire to participate. As Shakespeare put it in King Lear, the policeman who lashes the whore has a hot need to use her for the very offense for which he plies the lash.”
    ― Christopher Hitchens, God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything

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