Muslim Sisters AIDS Network general secretary sister Mariam Khan yesterday refuted the allegations that her organisation is distributing condoms.
Malawi Muslim Official Website yesterday carried out a story entitled ‘Musanet on Condom Distribution Campaign’ after one of the members who spoke on condition of anonymity on Monday confirmed to the website saying ‘we have now started distributing condoms to the couples ‘ where she also showed a sample.’ But, in an email statement the secretary described the development as ‘untrue’ and that Musanet has never distributed condoms.
‘We are not distributing condoms. Who told you?’ asked sister Khan.
According to another member said “if the condom are being distributed, then is for individual effort but not Musanet as a group because we do not have packets of condoms.”
The issue came barery after Musanet conducted a workshop at Kanjedza in Limbe where among other things they discussed about the importance of using condoms for married couples as one way of preventing themselves from contracting HIV/AIDS and other sexual transmitted diseases.
The workshop was funded by UNFPA and facilitated by Sandra Mapempa, Condom Programming Coordinator.
Musanet is one of the Islamic organisations in Malawi which aims at breaking the silence about HIV/AIDS among Muslims.
The moment MUSANET has started talking positive on the use of condom, the next step is to distribute.All they have to do is to arrange where should people get them, what criteria will be used to identify the right beneficiaries of the programme of condom distribution.What i mean is that distribution of condom still worthy is a good idea.
We us muslim lets join hands in preventing this deadly disease.
Let MUSANET disclose how they intend to fight this disease.because they took the first step and now is time for them to take action.I should admit that I don't know the position of Islam on condoms. But I believe as muslims we can contribute immensely to the eradication of this pandemic only and only if we take a positive stance. As for those brothers and sisters who are already positive, there should be a way of helping them to live a positive life. my request to MUSANET is that let them take a bold stance on this issue otherwise their campaign might be fruitless because if they just talk and end there without actions to help those who are already infected then I don't how they intend to help them.The way forward is, while others distribute condoms indiscriminately, let them target only the married couples and encourage abstenance for those who not married. that way, their mission might be compatible with Islamic teaching and talk about some of the cultures which are contributing to the spread of this pandemic.
MUSANET is already taking action since 2008 upto date. Below is a summary of what MUSANET has been doing, is doing and will continue to do inshaallah.
But remember it is not the mandate of MUSANET to distribute condoms, but to break the silence which it has achieved I am sure and to disseminate information on HIV/AIDS, its effects and how to try and minimize re-infection to those who are already living positively and to also empower them. MUSANET has programs for both the affected and infected ones.
For the past five months MUSANET has been critically involved in training people in Home Based Care workshops held throughout all the townships of Blantyre in conjunction with City Assembly Aids Coordinator, Lothiar Ngulube. MUSANET has managed to reach up to 634 women who have been trained on how to care for those that are cronically ill,those living positively, also those suffering from HIV/AIDS related diseases, cancer, maternal mortalities, early marriages etc. MUSANET is a grouping that has sisters with vast knowledge on this pandemic and where they are found to be lacking, MUSANET does not hesitate to invite expertees of different fields to give them lectures on different issues concerning the above mentioned problems/diseases hence the recent workshop sponsored by UNFPA which discussed condoms.
What Muslims must know is that always, FAITH-BASED APPROACHES ADD VALUE, but fighting HIV/AIDS in religious communities often means fighting ignorance and taboos, which can be tricky at times. What we need to do is come together as one religious community with our Ulamas and find preventive methods which are both practically effective and acceptable in our religion and maybe cultural context as well. May Allah GRANT US LIGHT TO ACHIEVE THIS.
Currently MUSANET is holding workshops with Muslim youth both girls and boys on the same subject of HIV/AIDS, because it has been realised that this pandemic is a universal one and nobody should be left out.
Sister Aida, "breaking the silence" only can't eradicate HIV/Aids in our communities. People already know the pandemic. What is required is a proactive approach.And is condoms can be allowed in Islam to married couples only, then I would love that MUSANET should empower their women by giving them condoms to use in their families.
I don't really like the silence from our learned Ulema in the issue of condoms on married couples, but it's better to save a life by using condoms but let the nation perish in silence!
Confused and left wordless, is this the way we are going to fighting this enemy? word words words antill when!wether the MUSANET is distributing the condoms or not,condoms will never put to an end the haste of this pandemic, what is needed now is straight talk associated with actions.This gesture of (Tiwonetsetse chilira pati anathetsa nkhuku zonse pakhomo)If MUSANET refuted the story of taking part in distribution of condoms, then what are the actions that has been taken by them since they declared to wage war agaist this enemy. Dear brothers and sisters if we are going to start fighting this enemy by depending on this weapon (condom) then we are fighting a loosing battle, lets rethink,otherwise its a wastage of effort and time.