Alfred Ndhlovu wonders why HIV and AIDS expert Nkandu Luo did not advise President Edgar Lungu accordingly on Mandatory Testing and Counseling for HIV, a very sensitive issue that has raised controversy in the country.
Ndhlovu, a former Deputy Minister said in an interview that professor Nkandu Luo and Health Minister Dr Chitalu Chilufya were both present in the Cabinet meeting that decided the scraping off of Voluntary Counseling and Testing(VCT), they could have advised the President that medical personnel are guided by professional ethics and not decrees.
Ndhlovu said it is unfortunate that President Lungu was misguided by his subjects and now he has put medical professionals in a difficult position as they would not want to compromise their ethics knowingly.
He said Prof Luo could have told President Lungu that people are not animals and their private lives must be respected.
Ndhlovu said people must be prepared psychologically before taking HIV tests as sudden death due to shock may occur.
” Why didn’t professor Nkandu Luo with her vast experience in HIV and AIDS related matters advise the President that medical personnel are guided by ethics. The President has put doctors work in an awkward position as they would not want to compromise their ethics. A Patient must give consent for the test to be carried out. Even Dr Chitalu Chilufya sure a medical doctor could not advise Ndhlovu said, ” I have taken HIV tests on two occasions and found negative but I wouldn’t want to force my friend to take a test,” he said.
The Former Transport and Communication Minister has since advised government to review the declaration and listen to want stakeholders are saying about the issue.
Luo is respected for her commitment in the fight against AIDS across the content.