First Lady Appointed HIV/AIDS Ambassador

The First Lady, Mrs Lordina Mahama, has accepted the role of HIV/AIDS Ambassadorial position to support Heart-to-Heart campaign and to champion the course of persons with HIV/AIDS in the country.

The Heart-to-Heart Ambassadors through the Ghana AIDS Commission, as part of a campaign to support the fight against HIV and AIDS, conferred on Mrs Mahama the title, at her residence in Accra on Wednesday.

The Ambassadors are the Reverend John Kwashie Azumah, Minister of the Gospel at Mount Zion Evangelical Ministries, and his wife, Lydia Azumah; Mrs Charity Owusu Danso and Mrs Gifty Torkornu.

They were accompanied by officials of the Ghana AIDS Commission, led by Mrs Angela El-Adas, Director General; Mrs Margaret Yamoah, Communications Manager, and Victoria Opokua Gyebi.

The First Lady said she was excited that she has been invited to join the campaign, and praised the Ambassadors for their bravery and commitment to saving lives through HIV/AIDS awareness strategies.

Mrs Mahama expressed her admiration for the four AIDS Ambassadors, who are careers of the HIV virus, for overcoming the stigma associated with the disease and launched the campaign, and to appear on TV programmes to create awareness.

The First Lady suggested to the Ambassadors and the Ghana AIDS Commission to project the campaign through local languages so as to reach many people.

Mrs Mahama also said: “Ghana AIDS Commission should make arrangements to train people who could administer the antiretroviral drug on people living with HIV and not to rely on the hospitals alone”.

She called on nurses at various health facilities to educate people living with the disease, and suggested to the Ghana Aids Commission to train selected members of Churches so that they could sensitise others on HIV and AIDS.

The First Lady promised to support babies born with HIV and have been abandoned by their parents and families.

The Director General of GAC, Mrs Angela El-Adas, recounted that President John Dramani Mahama was committed to making antiretroviral drug free for people living with HIV when he launched the campaign in November 2011.

She appealed to the Ministry of Health and the Ghana Health Service to ask health centres to stop charging GHS5.00 on the drug.