Members of Parliament who sit on the HIV/Aids committee have fronted a proposal for salary earners to contribute towards an HIV/Aids Trust Fund that will enhance the fight against the scourge in the country.
The fund is proposed to be an alternative source of revenue from the Ministry of Health budget which many experts say has always been inadequate in the fight against the HIV/Aids epidemic in the country.
According to the MPs, the fund is necessary in that it will be it aims at scrutinizing the HIV prevention and control Aids fund regulation to enable the country have an independent fund that will sustain persons living with HIV/Aids when donors completely withdraw funding for this cause.Cabinet also recently approved a proposal to allocate two per cent (2%) of collections from taxes on alcoholic and soft beverages to finance the Aids Trust Fund (ATF).
Connie Nakayenze Galiwango, the Mbale Woman MP, says that every salary earning person should be convinced to part with a minimum of 500 shillings every month so as to finance the fund.
“It is now that we should be thinking of alternative sources of funding for HIV/Aids patients as a country because globally, donor priorities are changing each time. It is therefore wise for us to prepare early to save our own people. I appeal to all workers to contribute towards this fund,” Galiwango said.
A total of 7 billion shillings is expected to be raised from the taxes on spirits and soft beers as an initial fund. The annual budget for HIV/Aids and TB drugs stands at 90 billion shillings which the civil society organizations have asked government to double to Shs180b so as to avert drug stock outs.