The chairperson of the track examining social, political, economic and health systems at the 8th South Africa AIDS Conference which took place in Durban from 13th to 15th June 2017, Dr Tlaleng Mofokeng, has called on people to let women decide what to do with their private parts saying that women’s private parts is their own affair.
The 33-year Mofokeng said “everyone has an opinion about the va****” adding that young women in particular are constantly judged.
“They are told to keep their legs closed; stay in school: use birth control and say no to blessers. Yet when we ask for services such as contraceptives and abortions, we are criticized,” said Dr Mofokeng.
She said that every week around 2000 young women are infected with HIV. But most of the HIV prevention campaigns are male-centred. Even female condoms are not really available.
For example, says Dr Mofokeng, “When having sex, we must wait for the man to put on a condom. Yet we are the ones who are at a higher risk of getting infections.”
Dr Mofokeng believes that the policies on HIV and STIs in schools are not implemented correctly as they focus too much on abstinence and ignore other equally important even better prevention methods.
She said: “They talk mainly about abstinence instead of talking about other prevention methods. There are young people right now who are HIV (positive) in school and no one is talking to them.”
Free State-born Tlaleng Mofokeng has interests in sexual health care, reproductive health care and ethics and rights. She runs a medical practice in sexual health at DISA clinic in Sandton, Gauteng and is widely known for her Sunday Times column on reproductive health and her no-nonsense radio slot on the same subject on Khaya FM.
The annual South African Aids Conference is the most attended Aids conference in Southern Africa. It offers a platform for civil society to meet and engage with government and donors in the area of HIV. This year’s 8th annual Southern African Aids Conference took place from 13 – 15 June 2017 at the Durban International Convention Centre with over 3 000 delegates working in the field of HIV under the theme “The Long Walk to Prevention: Every Voice Counts”
This article originally appeared on WhatsUpHIV . Additional reporting by The MaraviPost Correspondent.