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Govt seeking to fund drug trials

MATIISETSO MOSALA The government of Lesotho revealed its plan to raise M7-million to fund pre-clinical and clinical trials for the National University of Lesotho’s (NUL) drug compound, a potential treatment for Covid. The trials will evaluate whether the drug compound is safe for use in humans and determine if it can be

Fears of third Covid wave in Lesotho

MATIISETSO MOSALA Lesotho has just emerged from a terrible second wave of Covid-19 in which 309 people died – and now there are predictions that a third wave may be imminent. There are fears that a flood of Basotho workers returning from South Africa for Easter could trigger a new surge in

Letšeng mine faced with COVID-19 infection scare

Mine downplays high risks amid deaths Matiisetso Mosala Lesotho’s highest quality diamond producer, Letšeng Diamond Mine is allegedly faced with a challenge of containing the spread of COVID-19 amongst workers contracted by various companies on its mining site in Mokhotlong. The spread of the virus at the mine has reportedly led to the

Female condom low demand widens inequality gap

Matiisetso Mosala Cultural norms have dictated that women shy away from acts that expose their sexual desires. Women in Lesotho are frowned at if found carrying condoms on them. This exposes them to unplanned pregnancies, sexually transmitted diseases and further elevates their risk of contracting HIV. The female condom, known as femidom, was developed in the

Lesotho urged to go techno to quell new HIV infections

‘MATIISETSO MOSALA AND TUMISANG SERAME Deputy Minister of Home Affairs Machesetsa Mofomobe has advised parliament to adopt technological applications to remind people at regular intervals to use condoms as a preventive measure against HIV/AIDS. This approach, Mofomobe recommended during National Assembly’s deliberations on new HIV/AIDS infections threatening prospects of sustainable funding to support treatment of the pandemic. “New

Misery of being gay in Lesotho and the fight against HIV

…HIV prevalence among men who have sex with men a concern under the spotlight for People’s Matrix Billy Ntaote His attackers knew nothing and were ignorant and never thought deeply what it means to be loved and to live freely to make one’s own choices without being limited by rigid cultural norms. Rethabile (not

Initiation schools open doors for HIV treatment

MANTŠALI PHAKOANA and RELEBOHILE KHOALE Basotho are gradually dumping norms blamed for rising Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) statistics in initiation schools. Initiation schools’ common practices like sharing of razor-blades are shunned and infected initiates now continue their treatment while undergoing traditional training. According to Basotho culture, initiation is a form of training that boys undergo to become

HIV no longer a death sentence but the stigma remains

KEISO MOHLOBOLI It is now 31 years since the first World AIDS Day was commemorated in 1988 at the height of the AIDS pandemic. The Day was calculated to create awareness around HIV and AIDS, promote potential cures and remember the lives lost to the disease. But while 23-year-old Neo Ntaote is happy with the way antiretroviral (ARV)

Community groups help alleviate HIV stigma among men

BILLY NTAOTE Lesotho’s male population largely remains reluctant to visit health-centres or even take HIV tests, which present challenges in the country’s fight against HIV and AIDS. In some instances, men prefer to have their spouses take the HIV test and then assume their status would be the same as their partners’. But this norm is fast-changing

HIV-positive youths thrive on peer support

MANTŠALI PHAKOANA Lesotho’s adolescents between the ages of 10 and 24 years are among the people most vulnerable to HIV/AIDS due to poor healthcare, lack of family support, non-acceptance of long-term treatment and non-disclosure of their HIV-status to peers and family. It is this challenge that the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric Aids Foundation (EGPAF) recommends can be