THE PINK TONGUE: FIIFA won’t play safe

FIFA has been heavily criticised for its sponsor-only rules that don’t allow distribution of condoms or safe-sex information during 2010 Soccer World Cup games and events in South Africa.

Leading South African Aids organisations have condenmed FIFA and the Local Organising Committee (LOC) in a statement for not allowing condoms or safe-sex information within FIFA stadiums and Fan Fests.

NGOs said they had requested an urgent meeting with FIFA and the LOC to respond to their concems but their request was not granted.

In a statement release, the organisations said: “FIFA has a moral obligation to partner with local organisations who have been negotiating through the South Africa National AiDS Council (SANAC) Sports and Entertainment Sector with the LOG and FIFA in order to protect both citizens and visitors alike from HIV infection, TB and the H1N1 virus.

“Our government is calling for up to 15 million people to test for HIV in the next year. The World Cup is an opportunity to combine sport with messages about HIV prevention and healthy living that can be heard by millions.” The statement was endorsed by organisations,i ncluding the Aids Consortium, Community Media Trust,
Johns Hopkins Health and Education in SA, National Religious Association for Social Development, SA HIV  Clinicians Society Section 27, Sonke Gender Justice Network, Soul City and the Treatment Action Campaign.

There are an estimated 5.7 million people living with HIV in South Africa and this figure is more than any other  country in the world.

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