Over quarter of S.African schoolgirls HIV positive

As many as 28 percent of South African schoolgirls are HIV positive, according to figures from the country's health minister reported by local media on Thursday.

Unveiling statistics that minister Aaron Motsoaledi admitted "destroyed my soul," he added that four percent of schoolboys have the virus.

"It is clear that it is not young boys who are sleeping with these girls. It is old men," the Sowetan newspaper quoted Motsoaledi as saying.

"We can no longer live like that," he said.

Motsoaledi called for an end to the trend of becoming involved with "sugar daddies."

Motsoaledi also revealed that 94,000 South African schoolgirls fell pregnant in 2011, some aged as young as 10.

South Africa has one of the world's highest /AIDS infection rates, although the number of cases resulting in death is in sharp decline.

Official figures show that has six million people living with HIV, in a population of 50 million.

The country has the largest anti-retroviral programme in the world, serving 1.7 million.

The health department recently introduced measures to curb the spread of HIV among school children, introducing voluntary testing and suggesting condom distribution at schools.

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

S. African to double HIV patient treatment

Dec 14, 2010

(AP) -- South Africa's health minister says he has brought down the cost of HIV drugs by 53 percent, enabling the government to treat twice as many patients in the next two years.

S.Africa marks AIDS day with record ribbon

Dec 02, 2012

South Africa, home to the world's largest HIV caseload, on Saturday unveiled a 1.5 kilometre AIDS ribbon in Johannesburg, with activists and officials pledging to curb the epidemic.

Recommended for you

New study reveals why some people may be immune to HIV-1

15 hours ago

Doctors have long been mystified as to why HIV-1 rapidly sickens some individuals, while in others the virus has difficulties gaining a foothold. Now, a study of genetic variation in HIV-1 and in the cells ...

Virus discovery could impact HIV drug research

22 hours ago

A research team led by Portland State University (PSU) biology professor Ken Stedman has unlocked the structure of an unusual virus that lives in volcanic hot springs. The discovery could pave the way for better drugs to ...

UN warns over threat of AIDS rebound

Nov 19, 2014

South African actress Charlize Theron threw her weight Tuesday behind an urgent new UN campaign to end AIDS as a global health threat by 2030.

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.