The House of Representatives Committee on HIV and AIDS, Malaria Control, Tuberculosis and Leprosy, through its chairman Dr. Joseph Kigbu, has said that the proposed HIV and AIDS Anti-Stigma Law will assist Nigeria to achieve zero infection.
Kigbu commended the House for passing the bill into law, hoping that the Senate and the president would also do the same.
He said it was important to ensure the passage of the anti-stigma bill into law to “show our seriousness.”
He said the law would make people living with the virus declare their status; seek for treatment without fear of stigmatisation.
“When we reduce stigma and discrimination, we also cut the chain of transmission, so the essence of this bill actually is to get to achieve a zero level of infection of HIV/AIDS in Nigeria.
“When you are positive, you hide because you are going to be stigmatised by family, friends and the society.
“Research has shown that stigma and discrimination upon patients living with HIV and AIDS propagate HIV and AIDS, and we don’t want it, our prayer is that we achieve zero level, a free HIV generation,’’ he said.
He explained that the law would protect the rights of those living with HIV/AIDS, as many of them were being stigmatised all over the world.