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HIV Prevention Campaigns Move To Lecture Halls 

CameroonPostline.com — Henceforth, prevention campaigns against HIV/AIDS will be introduced into teaching methods in the University of Maroua, UMa.

This is the raison d’être of a capacity-building seminar for lecturers and other personnel of the University, held on May 24 – 25, to integrate the prevention of HIV/AIDS into the university curriculum.

The two-day seminar was attended by university dons and lecturers, where talks were given on preventive methods, integration of preventive methods and fight against the pandemic in university curriculum, the didactics of the prevention in schools, amongst others.

According to the Rector of the University of Maroua, Prof. Edward Ako Oben, who presided over the seminar, the training and eventual implementation is a proof of the participation of the UMa in this public health concern, HIV/AIDS, calling on all to transcend all traditional, religious, cultural issues to ensure that the prevention of HIV/AIDS in our classrooms is effective.

“I am convinced that in the absence of a cure or preventive vaccine, we can also use alternative preventive means which include; sexual abstention, use of condoms, fidelity to one’s partner and knowing one’s serological status,” Prof. Ako Oben said.

He added that the campaign is obligatory and will be carried out with much seriousness, given that contamination of HIV/AIDS is not optional but a national and international health problem affecting especially the youths. “The students and entire university community know the importance to fight and prevent the spread of the disease… it is in everyone’s interest”.

According to one of the participants, who is the Director of the Higher Institute of Sahel, ISS, Pr. Kolyang, it is important to have a capacity building for lecturers so that when they are teaching, they have to introduce very smoothly the topic of prevention in their lectures. However, he said “it is not a course on HIV, but a matter of sensitising students and equally sensitising themselves that we have a real problem of public health and that this problem can be tackled with the help of concerted efforts.

Dr. Divine Nde said that, given the reluctance of most students to listen to such sensitisation campaigns, they won’t be able to escape this time around because, while they will be attending lectures, the lecturers will smoothly switch to the awareness campaign.

The seminar was financed by the Association of African Universities, AAU, which is an organisation and forum for consultation information sharing and cooperation between higher institutes of learning in Africa that was created in 1967. Its mission is to ameliorate the quality of higher education in Africa and to intensify its contribution to the development of Africa by reinforcing collaboration between member institutions and offering their support in domain of research.

First published in The Post print edition no. 01348

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