South Africa's President Zuma - HIV negative

Written by Mike Roberts

Thursday, 29 April 2010

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"Don't forget to wash your hands!" it's the responsible thing to do.

South Africa's President Zuma has revealed that he is HIV negative in a move that has surprised many and brought condemnation from others.

Mr Zuma said, he hoped to "promote openness, eradicate the silence and stigma attached to the disease and make all South Africans understand that people infected with HIV are not criminals."

While the openness of the President was generally well received there were some who questioned exactly what message Mr Zuma was trying to send, and why.

The criticism was sparked when Mr Zuma's announcement on state TV was immediately followed by an advertisement for the presidents new book 'Rub-a-dub-scrub, don't get the bug', a guide on how to avoid HIV infection.

The book contains 'tips' such as;

After hands-only sexual contact, a quick wash, with soap if available, will suffice. In an emergency, urinating on your hands is a good way of disinfecting them.

The risks attached to oral pleasures can easily be overcome with the use of a good quality toothpaste such as Colgate. "The ring of confidence and shiny white teeth are an added bonus, especially for an aspiring politician like myself." quips Mr Zuma in the advert.

AIDS activists were horrified. "I can't believe that anyone would try to 'cash in' on a rape trial. I know he's a politician but really, how low can you go?" said one outraged worker for the AIDS Foundation South Africa.

The trial the man was referring to occurred in 2006. During the trial, Mr Zuma was accused of raping one of his daughter's friends, knowing she was HIV positive. In his testimony he admitted that he had had unprotected sex with the woman but that he showered afterwards to reduce his chance of being infected.

"What's the moral here? It's okay to have unprotected sex even if you know someone is HIV positive, just make sure you have a shower afterwards and there won't be a problem." said the activist.

The president responded to the criticism in an official statement issued earlier today.

'Firstly, I was found not guilty of the rape in question. It is irrelevant and I wish people would stop talking about it. Secondly, what's your point? I've had lots of unprotected sex but all four AIDS tests were negative. Obviously showering works!'.

The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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