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Zimbabwean homosexuals have criticised Health Minister David Parirenyatwa over remarks he made recently that homosexuality contributed to increased HIV in prisons, a report said.
Parirenyatwa told the state-owned Herald newspaper this week that the prevalence of HIV and Aids showed that people were jailed while already infected or that there was rampant homosexuality behind bars.
In response, the Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe (GALZ) said although they welcomed Parirenyatwa’s attitude towards opening a debate on homosexuality, the group believed that the issue of HIV and Aids in prisons had nothing to do with homosexuality.
GALZ director Chesterfield Samba said it was more of a “practical health rights issue” and it required government’s commitment.
Samba suggested that long periods of detention in terrible prison conditions forced males to engage in sexual activities with each other.
He added that overcrowding in prisons was also worsening the conditions of inmates living with HIV and those infected with TB.
Samba also said that by refusing to make condoms available in prisons, the government was encouraging the spread of sexually transmitted diseases. source-bulawayo24
photo-Zimbabwe’s Health Minister David Parirenyatwa