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

Condoms 'too small' for Uganda men

Sep 19, 2014

Ugandan MPs have been inundated with complaints that many condoms on sale in the east African nation are too small, warning the problem is a blow to the fight against AIDS.

Withdrawal from the evolutionary race

Sep 18, 2014

In some HIV sufferers, the immune system does not fight off the immune deficiency virus. Instead, the body tolerates the pathogen. A research team headed by ETH Zurich has now determined how strongly patients ...

The genetics of coping with HIV

Sep 16, 2014

We respond to infections in two fundamental ways. One, which has been the subject of intensive research over the years, is "resistance," where the body attacks the invading pathogen and reduces its numbers. Another, which ...

User comments