ETHEKWINI NEWS FLASH
 
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
 
13/06/2016
 
South Africa Geared up to Host 21st International AIDS Conference
 
It’s all system go for the 21st International AIDS Conference to be held in Durban, South Africa from 18-22 July 2016.
 
This is the assurance given by Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radebe during the Inter-Ministerial Committee media briefing held in Durban today, 13 June 2016.
 
Radebe made the announcement after the committee conducted an inspection of the Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convection Centre (ICC) and surrounding facilities to assess Durban’s state of readiness including the logistical arrangements.
 
The committee, which comprises of 16 Ministers, KwaZulu-Natal Premier and eThekwini Mayor was established by President Jacob Zuma to ensure that the event is a success.
 
During a meeting which was held in Durban today, the committee was applauded by national, provincial and local government on the state of readiness to host the conference.
 
The committee also received an update on infrastructure, security, health and immigration plans for the event.
 
Addressing members of the media Radebe said: “We are satisfied that indeed South Africa is ready to welcome the world and to host a successful AIDS 2016 conference where history will be made in advancing the global fight against HIV, AIDS and TB.”
 
Radebe said the conference presents South Africa with an opportunity to showcase its achievements, share its challenges and be exposed to global developments that can help the country prevent new infections, step up treatment and end discrimination and stigma.
 
“South Africa has the world's biggest HIV and AIDS treatment programme, which started in earnest with the launch of the world's biggest testing campaign, popularly known as HIV Counselling and Testing (HCT) campaign in 2010,” said Radebe.
 
Approximately 18 million South Africans tested for HIV/AIDS within 18 months of the HCT campaign.
 
About 10 million South Africans currently test their HIV/AIDS status on an annual basis.
 
The international AIDS conference will bring together 20 000 delegates including journalists representing 180 countries and it will be an opportunity to mark progress South Africa has made in fighting the AIDS epidemic.
 
The conference will also feature a Global Village, which is a diverse, dynamic and vibrant community-driven space where people from all over the world will gather to share and learn more about HIV/AIDS.
 
EThekwini Mayor James Nxumalo called on residents to open their hearts and homes as the City prepares to welcome delegates, adding that he would like to see the delegates return to visit the country after the conference.
 
ENDS
Issued by eThekwini Municipality Head of Communications Unit, Tozi Mthethwa.
 
For more information members of the media can contact Thulani Mbatha on 0313114820 or email: thulani.mbatha1@durban.gov.za or Princess
 
Nkabane on 031 311 4818 or email: princess.nkabane@durban.gov.za
Please read this confidentiality disclaimer: http://www.durban.gov.za/Pages/edisclaimer.aspx