Institute of Human Virology, Nigeria has listed two major projects paramount in its agenda – inauguration of its N2 billion seven-floor twin tower building and the shifting HIV/AIDS campaign to schools.
The building situated in Airport road in Abuja would be inaugurated in the first quarter of 2019.
The Chief Executive Officer of the Institute, Dr Patrick Dakum, said the construction of the building had reached the fourth floor.
He said that the fight against HIV/AIDS would be intensified, targeting the schools next year.
The CEO explained that the institute would work closely with the school authorities and the students.
Dakum called on the Nigerian youth to practise full abstinence from sex to avoid getting infected with HIV.
He said that the youth must be determined, resilient and empowered with knowledge on what HIV and prevention is all about, to enable them to have focus and keep their dreams alive.
He also stressed that the youth were the leaders of tomorrow and should ensure an AIDS free nation, adding that IHVN would be available to mentor students to achieve an HIV free country.
”Nigeria has made tremendous effort in the fight against HIV. We were formally at 5.8 per cent but today it has reduced to 2.9 per cent, so we have achieved a great deal.
”We targeted the schools this year and we will work closely with the school authorities and the students,” he said.
”Although there is still much to be done, because it is the youth that are becoming more infected, so we need strategies to help them stay negative and prevent themselves from becoming positive.
Dakum, therefore, urged Nigerians to spread the massage of HIV across their neighbourhood as every individual has a role to play in the fight against the spread and to stop stigmatisation.
He said the institute had been partnering effectively with the Federal Government in the treatment of HIV/AIDS and other opportunistic infections.
Dakum said the institute had been engaged in the treatment and management of HIV/AIDS patients and other related ailments in 35 states and FCT.
“We have become a partner with the Federal Government in the management of infectious diseases throughout the country by providing support and treatment for the control of infectious diseases,’’ he said.
He explained the institute was established in 2004 with the support of the Institute for Human Virology in Baltimore led by Professor Robert Gallow, who co-discovered the HIV virus.
Dakum said that the IHVN had extended its scope from working for the prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS treatment to the treatment of tuberculosis as well as other allied diseases as cervical and breast cancer.