NCIC bemoans loss of skilled labor to HIV/AIDS

Written by  Chimwemwe Milulu

The migratory nature of contractors and the money they bring to the project areas tend to increase the risk of the spread of HIV between those employed by the contractor and the communities, hence the need to sensitize them on the reality and impact of HIV/AIDS to the socio-economic development of an individual, community and the country at large.

13
May


Through their HIV/AIDS policy, the National Construction Industry Council - NCIC, is working with different stakeholders to prevent loss of skilled and productive manpower to HIV/AIDS.


During the HIV/AIDS sensitization meeting held at Eswazini in the area of Inkosi Kampingo Sibande in Mzimba District, the Regional NCIC Officer for the North, Engineer Jeremiah Nkowani, said as an industry, they have also been affected by HIV/AIDS.


‘The National Construction Industry Council has lost some of its members such as Engineers, Surveyors, Architects, Foremen and other skilled and productive people to HIV/AIDS and it becomes difficult to replace them. As such, we sensitize communities to avoid contracting HIV,’ he said.


Grading of the Mzimba-Kafukule Road which was impassable in some sections during the past rainy season is already in progress.


As the old M1 Road connecting to Rumphi and other parts of the Northern region, it is one of the most important feeder roads in the district as at the moment, two bridges that directly connect Mzimba North and South are not passable.


‘To travel from Euthini and other parts of Mzimba North to the boma is currently a challenge. Two main bridges including Chakazi, are impassable and most of the vehicles are using the Kafukule Road. Two contractors have been engaged and are already on site. Therefore the sensitization meeting is timely,’ said Yusuf Kazembe, Roads Supervisor for Mzimba District.


With a population of close to one million people, the HIV prevalence rate for the Ngoni district of Mzimba is 3.5%.


Most people, especially young men in the district, migrate to South Africa in search of greener pastures.

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