Christmas Preparations Fail Safe Male Circumcision Drive

2272 Views Gulu, Uganda

In short
A safe male circumcision camp organized at Gulu regional referral hospital for one week has registered low turn as residents prepare to celebrate the festive season. According to numbers obtained by URN, 400 males were circumcised by the end of the camp which ended last week.

A safe male circumcision camp organized at Gulu regional referral hospital for one week has registered low turn as residents prepare to celebrate the festive season.
 
According to numbers obtained by URN, 400 males were circumcised by the end of the camp which ended last week.
 
Roselyn Oyella, the focal person safe male circumcision, said that the turn up is very poor when compared to the earlier circumcision camp which attracted over 1000 males. She attributed the low turn up on the preparations for the festive season.
 
She said in the past circumcision campaigns the target of over 1000 males was nearly reached. In a camp organized in January last year over 800 males were circumcised.
 
Cue in: “we welcome…”
Cue out: “…kill the pain”
 
She says that majority of the people who get circumcised are students who turn up during the holiday season.
 
She however noted that the other challenge facing the safe male circumcision drive is the distance from the villages to the Gulu regional referral hospital which provides the services.
 
The quarterly camp is supported by Sustain a US funded project and Gulu regional referral hospital. It involves other activities like HIV counselling and testing, accessing ARVs, cancer screening and treatment and other medical check-ups.
 
Safe male circumcision is a strategy that reduces the risks of contracting HIV/Aids by 60%. Experts however say that it does not guarantee that one is safe from HIV/Aids when circumcised.
 
One of those who got circumcised on Friday is Dan Oling (26). He confessed he had hesitated to go for the circumcision because of he thought the experience would be painful. After the operation, he urges more men to undergo it.

 

About the author

Alex Otto
“Journalism that changes lives is my goal,” Alex Otto has said on more than one occasion. That is his career’s guiding principle. Has been since he was a radio journalist in the northern Ugandan town of Gulu in 2009.

Otto passionately believes his journalism should bring to the fore the voices of the voiceless like the shooting victims of Apaa. Otto tries in his journalism to ask tough questions to those in positions of authority.

Based in the Kampala bureau, Otto is especially interested in covering agriculture, politics, education, human rights, crime, environment and business. He has reported intensively on the post-conflict situation in northern Uganda.

A URN staff member since 2014, Otto previously worked with The Observer Newspaper from 2012 to 2013 and later the Institute for War and Peace Reporting IWPR based in Gulu.

He was the URN Gulu bureau chief 2014-2016.