PAMOJA - GEMEINSAM - Verein für int. Zusammenarbeit
PAMOJA - TOGETHER - Association for Intl. Cooperation

AIDS 2012: IAS Moves to Implement Activist Demands for More Accountability

Vienna, Austria (March 7, 2011) – Pamoja – Together, the solidarity group founded to support the human rights struggle of Tanzanian HIV/AIDS activists, is pleased to recognize progress on a number of critically important issues on which it lobbied aggressively with the International AIDS Society (IAS) at AIDS 2010 in Vienna.

“We are encouraged to see the IAS addressing seriously questions of corruption and accountability in the world-wide battle against HIV/AIDS,” says Pamoja-Together Chair Fabian Wirnsperger. “Our Tanzanian partners, Aizack Sanga, a member of the HIV/AIDS self-help group PIUMA, and the scientist Jumah Madati who joined us in Vienna last summer, spoke powerfully and effectively to the IAS leadership.”

Pamoja-Together lobbied tirelessly at AIDS 2010 in Vienna for “Accountability for Delivery” at all levels from everyone who claims to fight AIDS and suggested that the IAS make it the central theme for AIDS 2012. It further demanded that the IAS ensure that its own members not be involved in corrupt practices and that all organizations that participate in IAS events be subject to regular, independent financial and program audits.

“In Tanzania, we are fighting corrupt individuals and organizations who exploit the needs of persons living with HIV/AIDS for personal gain,” explains Jumah Madati, a respected scientist and investigator from Tanzania. “We brought a clear message to the IAS in Vienna that the human rights of HIV+ people are being compromised severely by a lack of accountability in my country.”

A professional chemist, Jumah Madati was a member of a special Ministry of Health investigation team in 2007 that uncovered compelling evidence of serious corruption in Tanzanian procurement practices for essential HIV/AIDS testing and treatment technologies that extended beyond Tanzania to multinational private corporations and international agencies. His recommendations on how to stop the corruption and correct the human rights abuses that resulted from it have yet to be implemented.

Pamoja-Together is particularly pleased that the IAS has, according to its Deputy Executive Director Mats Ahnlund, appointed a Governance and Membership subcommittee that will look to “increase accountability within our own democratic structure.” As well, the IAS is also taking steps to make the theme of “accountability for delivery” a regular part of its conferences, including AIDS 2012.

“I am enthusiastic about this increasing focus on accountability,” says Jumah Madati. “I congratulate IAS President Dr. Elly Katabira and Mr. Ahnlund for their leadership and I am accepting Mr. Ahnlund’s invitation to provide input to the Accountability for Delivery component of the program for AIDS 2012.”

Pamoja-Together is a volunteer-based association in Vienna that is partnered with the HIV/AIDS self-help group PIUMA in Makete District, Tanzania. It advocates for high-quality health care for people living with HIV/AIDS in accordance with the recognition of the basic human right to medical care. It also fights corruption among Tanzanian health service providers and their financial supporters including governments, churches, and foreign donor agencies, demanding more transparency and control within the NGO sector.
Jumah Madati and his courageous efforts to uncover corruption and make it known to the world are featured in a soon-to-be-released film produced by Pamoja-Together called CD4: Profiting from Death (watch the trailer at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qfcs3qS9TFQ).

For more information or for an interview with Jumah Madati and Aizack Sanga, contact:

Fabian Wirnsperger
Chair, Pamoja
Vienna, Austria
E-Mail: office(at)pamoja.at
Cell: +43 650 533 88 27
Web: http://www.pamoja.at

Jumah Madati
Retired Chief Government Chemist, Ministry of Health and Social Welfare
Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
E-Mail: madati(at)yahoo.com
Cell: +255 713 625 350

Aizack Sanga
PIUMA-Member
Bulongwa, Makete District, Tanzania
Email: office(at)piuma-simba.org
Cell: +255 768 375 168
Web: http://www.piuma-simba.org

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