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Wednesday, 01 October 2008

Zackie Achmat motivates CPUT students


Gay rights activist and leader of the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC), Zackie Achmat, recently addressed Cape Peninsula University of Technology Public Relations students during their weekly forum.

The forum sees representatives from organisations addressing students on various topics in order to give them exposure to communication issues outside of their classroom walls.

With students currently discussing Political Communication in class, Achmat, who was also an active anti-Apartheid activist, proved to be the ideal speaker for the forum held on 26 September, 2008.

Achmat touched on various issues relating to communication in his area of activism. He said after 10 years in operation, the TAC faces many battles due to the misrepresentations of HIV/Aids advertisements. He said communication around the disease needs constant monitoring to ensure the public is correctly informed.

Achmat also appealed to all South Africans, small businesses and corporate companies, to take up socially responsibility and become involved in “activism within the country”.

“With a government geared towards dealing with HIV/Aids and a community more involved with assisting in combating the rapid spread of the pandemic, the TAC can concentrate on other health issues, which too need attention,” he said. This includes working towards creating a unified health system to bridge the vast gap between the countries public and private health sectors.

“By gaining the necessary help, the TAC will be able to operate on a broader spectrum and ultimately achieve their vision, which is to educate, promote and develop an understanding and commitment within all communities of developments in HIV/Aids treatment,” he said.

Achmat also expressed his approval of the recent cabinet changes.

“The appointment of Barbara Hogan as the new Health Minister will assist the TAC in furthering their goals and dreams for every human being to have access to healthcare, but to also rather appeal to a government which recognises that Africa and the world have an HIV/Aids crisis,” he said.

By Jade Snyman

Written by CPUT News