The District AIDS Task Force (DATF) committee in Chinsali District of Muchinga Province has embarked on a sensitization programme targeting construction workers in the district in order to raise awareness on HIV and AIDS.

Chinsali DATF Committee Chairperson, Elizabeth Mulenga said construction workers in Chinsali have been targeted for the programme due to the nature of their job as they operate and come from distant areas thereby exposing them to the HIV infection.

Speaking during the first sensitization programme held at Sino Hydro Construction Company in Muyinga area in Chinsali yesterday, Ms. Mulenga explained that the main objective of the sensitization programme is to provide in depth information on HIV and AIDS as well as conduct voluntary counseling and testing (VCT).

Ms. Mulenga said with a lot of construction projects currently taking place in Chinsali, workers are too vulnerable to catch the HIV infection charging that the committee saw it significant to begin a sensitization programme for the workers.

And DATF District AIDS Coordinator for Chinsali, Sally Mumba, urged workers at Sino Hydro to take the sensitization programme seriously emphasizing that matters regarding health are important.

Ms. Mumba said the DATF committee will continue carrying out the sensitization programmes in several construction camps in the district for more awareness creation among the mobile workers.

She added that Government saw it prudent to come up with a policy where all contractors engaged to do different projects in the country to contribute five percent towards the HIV and AIDS pandemic programme.

She further mentioned that distribution of condoms and VCT activities are among the programmes lined up this year.

Meanwhile an employee with Sino Hydro, Evans Chileshe thanked the DATF for embarking on the programme to sensitize construction workers.

He said the programme is a welcome move because it creates in depth understanding on HIV/AIDS prevention and other related issues.

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