On Saturday 7 June 2003, from 09h00-10h00, the Treatment Action Campaign will be holding a picket at the entrance to the Growth and Development Summit at Gallagher Estate, Midrand.
TAC supports the Growth and Development Summit and supports the proposals that have been made by Labour and Community that aim to create sustainable employment and community development for those who are currently being kept outside of the formal economy.
However, TAC believes that growth and development without a much more serious approach to the HIV/AIDS epidemic will not be sustainable, as recognized by the ANC conference of December 2002. Economic growth is being harmed by 600 AIDS-related deaths a day. Social capital and investment is being lost in 600 AIDS-related deaths a day. Lives will be saved and jobs created if there is a commitment to local manufacture of generic medicines, as part of a Treatment Plan.
It is 6 months since the NEDLAC HIV/AIDS task team finalized the draft Framework Agreement on a National HIV/AIDS Prevention and Treatment Plan. Business says it is willing to sign an agreement. Only government remains outstanding.
TAC calls on the parties at the Growth and Development Summit to:
TAC looks forward to a constructive meeting with Deputy President and SANAC on 14th June 2003. Before then we urge every member of cabinet to work night and day to finalise the decision on an anti-retroviral treatment programme, on which so many lives depend.
For further information, please contact:
Mark Heywood 083 634 8806
Pholokgolo Ramothwala 082 969 8691