Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Govt has no mandate to force all men to be circumcised


By By Valentine Oforo @TheCitizenTz news@tz.nationmedia.com

Local communities which don't  accept male circumcision must have all reasons to smile following the government's announcement that it doesn’t legal mandate to force all men in the country to undergo the said ritual.

Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children deputy minister, Dr Hamisi Kigwangala, told the august house today September 12 that forcing all men to undergo circumcision was against worldwide health regulations.

However, he said this after informing the Parliament that uncircumcised men contribute to at least 60 per cent of HIV/Aids prevalence in the country.

He detailed that as per the WHO health services regulations any operation process must get a permission from a patient.

He was responding to a question from Ms Hawa Ghasia (Mtwara Rural - CCM) who asked why the government is not directing circumcision to be compulsory to all men in the country.

Ms Ghasia wanted also to know efforts by the government on raising awareness over health benefits of male circumcision.

In her supplement question, lawmaker also wanted to know seriousness by the government at fighting HIV/Aids in the country because "statistics have proved that HIV/Aids prevalence to be high in communities where men are not circumcised.

“Why the government has maintains laxity and not force all men to be circumcised?” she asked.

In his response, Dr Kigwangala said it was not easy for the government to do so. He told the Parliament that the ministry had conducted a special evaluation to establish regions with low circumcision rate in the country.

He added that the move aimed at scaling up campaigns and provisions of the said services in order to change the habit.

He disclosed the regions which ranks low in circumcision rate as Iringa, Tabora, Mbeya, Songwe, Rukwa, Katavi, Shinyanga, Simiyu, Mwanza, Geita, Kagera and Musoma.

He added, by October this year, Singida, Kigoma, Mara and Morogoro will be added in the list.

But Dr Kigwangala issued a warning to all local communities that practice circumcision at homes.

He said circumcision was supposed to be conducted by a trained medical officer.