Kofi Annan’s Special Envoy for HIV/AIDS in Africa, Stephen Lewis, will begin a three-day visit to Lesotho on Wednesday, 17 August to follow up on the latest developments on the HIV and AIDS front, with a focus on treatment both at the health centre and the household level, the Secretary-General’s Office said.
World Health Organization (WHO) Global Director of HIV/AIDS, Jim Kim will also visit Lesotho on the same day for one day to review progress made on the roll-out programme for Anti-Retrovirals (ARVs) in Lesotho with specific reference to the agency’s goal of treating 3 million people with anti-retroviral therapy by the end of 2005.
During his mission Mr. Lewis will meet with the senior Government officials and UN representatives in Lesotho. He will also meet the National AIDS Secretariat and the newly established Lesotho Network of People Living with HIV/AIDS (LENEPWHA). He was due to visit Lesotho in July but the visit was cancelled due to unforeseen circumstances.
In tangible/physical terms, the Special Envoy's advocacy efforts, visits and follow-ups have contributed significantly in putting Lesotho on the "global radar screen" as he has relentlessly advocated for technical and financial resources in supporting the Government's efforts in fighting HIV/AIDS and more specifically in scaling up treatment.
Meanwhile, Dr. Kim will also meet with the Minister of Health, Dr. Motloheloa Phooko, WHO Representative, Dr. Angela Benson and the UN Country Team. He will also take a guided tour of the Queen Elizabeth II Hospital Pediatric Ward in Maseru.