New York, New York – According to recent wire reports, the seroprevalence of HIV/AIDS in Equatorial Guinea, was reported between 30,000 and 60,000 infected people. The Ministry of Health and Social Welfare categorically denies having given the figures reported.
“These numbers are completely wrong and, at this time, the draft DHS (Demographic and Health Survey) is being finalized, which specifies all health parameters, and which will be published later this year, once it has been reviewed and formally approved by the Government. Consequently, the data given is purely speculative and given with the intention of creating negative propaganda against the Government of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea”, says Tomas Mecheba Fernandez, Ministry of Health and Social Welfare.
UNICEF, one of the conveners during a recent gathering on HIV/AIDS in Equatorial Guinea where this information was disseminated from said in a statement:
“Within the fidelity and transparency that characterizes the work of UNICEF internationally and particularly in Equatorial Guinea, we wish to dissociate ourselves from such erroneous information published by the press, and to refute it, because UNICEF never alluded to any data statistics on HIV/AIDS in Equatorial Guinea. At the same time, we express our solidarity with the authorities of the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare on the ethical principle of not disseminating statistical data that have not been officially verified and validated by the sponsoring Ministry of Health of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea.
Finally, we express the availability of this Representation of UNICEF to continue working with the Government of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea as it has been doing, in a framework of trust, respect, transparency and consensus in favor of our common interests, which are to promote the development and welfare of the population, especially for the most disadvantaged”.
GC Media, the communications partner for Goree Challenge IV – The Spirit of Malabo has apologized to the Government of Republic of Equatorial Guinea for sharing this erroneous data that on the surface seem credible. “We pulled the information and were wrong. In the future, we will seek confirmation from the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare”, said Lisa Samuels of GC Media.
For more on the Goree Challenge IV – The Spirit of Malabo, visit http://www.goreechallenge.com.
Reporting includes information from Equatorial Guinea’s Press and Information Office.