Circumcision exercise targets males aged 15-49 in Awerial

The National Ministry of Defense of South Sudan department of medical Corps is preparing to conduct a 10-day voluntarily medical male circumcision exercise in Mingkaman town, Awerial County, this week.

The free circumcision program that is set to start on Wednesday is targeting 500 Males aged 15 to 49.

Brig.-Gen James Wal, who is leading the program in the area, says the initiative is part of the medical campaign to reduce the risks of HIV infection in males.

“This will reduce the risk of contracting the virus by 60%. Another prevention measure is the use of condom and abstinence, especially if you are not married,” he told Mingkaman FM on Monday.

James Manyiel Agup, county medical officer — who is part of the campaign — says the rate of HIV in Awerial continues to rise every year. However, he declined to disclose the figures.

“This is true and we need to accept this free campaign as a fight against HIV,” Manyiel added.

The free circumcision program was first launched in Jonglei State in 2022.

Some of the male listeners who called during a radio show appreciated the initiative and expressed their willingness to participate in the program.

Generally, HIV prevalence among individuals aged 15–49 years in South Sudan is estimated at 2.4%, according to UNAIDS. It also says there are approximately 194,000 PLHIV, less than one in five of whom are on ART.