NYAMASHEKE — An official of the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) Rwanda has urged married police officers and local defence personnel in the country to remain faithful to their partners in order to avoid contracting HIV.
Geoffrey Ngiruwonsanga, the project manager for a programme dubbed ‘Uniformed Personnel and Prisoners Project (UPP)’ under the ADRA, was last Friday closing training for police and local defence personnel on Aids prevention and treatment.
About 66 policemen and members of local defence drawn from 15 sectors of Nyamasheke District attended the five-day training at Kagano parish, Kagano sector.
Ngiruwonsanga advised single members to abstain from sex in order to avoid the virus. Participants were also urged to avoid indulging in unprotected sex by using condoms.
"You know very well that good health is important for a person in order for him/her to keep security for others, so it’s crucial for you as security conscious personnel to always be exemplary in combating HIV in your respective homes and places of work," he said.
He added, "There is need to collaborate with other institutions in laying down various strategies on how to further prevent the spread of HIV countrywide. This is because this would enable us to improve and achieve our future targeted goals as a nation."
He also encouraged the trainees to always carry out dialogue in their respective homes on matters of Aids prevention, sensitize and mobilise residents to join hands in the fight against the Aids scourge.
Participants were further asked to always encourage residents to go for voluntary counseling and testing of HIV in order to know their health status.
Inspector Constante Rwangombwa who spoke on behalf of the trainees applauded UPP for organising the workshop.
"We as policemen and Local Defence personnel particularly working in Nyamasheke district thank UPP for teaching us all the basics on how to fight and prevent HIV/Aids in our homes, areas of work and in the whole region. We shall work as ambassadors as regards to encouraging all residents to prevent themselves from being infected with the HIV virus," Rwangombwa who was among the trainees said.
At the closing ceremony each trainee was also given a book that contains several guidelines on how to prevent the disease.
According to Ngiruwonsanga, the project targets the training of 3,000 Local Defence personnel, 1,600 soldiers and 200 policemen in Nyamasheke and Karongi districts this year.
Vincent Muragwa, the Nyamasheke Mayor applauded UPP for training security personnel on matters of Hiv/Aids prevention and urged them to extend the same training to other residents.