Poverty and gender inequality a key role in the increased spread of HIV/Aids in Africa , Health Minister Charity Ngilu and Mrs Nane Annan noted yesterday.
Ngilu and Nane, the wife of the visiting United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan, said there was need to empower women on the continent to make them key players in the fight against HIV/Aids, reports allafrica.com.
A report released this week by UNAIDS, the Joint U.N. Programme on HIV/AIDS, showed 35 million people in the world live with the disease and of those, 25 million are from sub-Saharan Africa. The region has just over 10 percent of the world's population.
AIDS killed approximately 2.2 million people in Africa in 2003, 75 percent of the deaths globally.
"(There is a) need for all of us to become engaged to fight this epidemic which on this continent is really taking away the future of many societies and many communities," Annan told journalists in Nairobi after meeting Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki, quotes Reuters.