This is an archive of the Treatment Action Campaign's public documents from
December 1998 until October 2008. I created this website because the TAC's
website appears unmaintained and people were concerned that it
was becoming increasingly hard to find important documents.
The menu items have been slightly edited and a new stylesheet applied to the site. But none of the documents have been edited, not even for minor errors. The text appears on this site as obtained from the Internet Archive.
The period covered by the archive encompassed the campaign for HIV medicines, the civil disobedience campaigns, the Competition Commission complaints, the 2008 xenophobic violence and the PMTCT, Khayelitsha health workers and Matthias Rath court cases.
TAC Expresses Condolences to the Mandela family
TAC SUPPORTS MADIBA'S CALL ON PEOPLE TO VOLUNTEER TO TEST FOR HIV AND DISCLOSE HIV INFECTION
7 January 2005
"Let us give publicity to HIV/AIDS and not hide it, because the only way to make it appear like a normal illness like TB, like cancer, is always to come out and to say somebody has died because of HIV/AIDS. And people will stop regarding it as something extraordinary." - Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, 6 January 2005.
Former President Nelson Mandela has announced that his last surviving son, Makgatho Mandela, has died of AIDS at 54.
The Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) offers its condolences to the Mandela family, and to Makgatho's surviving children. We salute the them for their decision to disclose the cause of death in the national interest of raising awareness of HIV and destigmatising AIDS during a time of great personal pain and loss.
The TAC expresses solidarity and support for Mr. Mandela's courageous announcement disclosing that HIV was the cause of his son's death. This, we hope, will encourage more people to be counselled, tested for HIV and, when necessary, treated.
Many people in South Africa have died and are dying from AIDS without knowing their HIV status or without taking appropriate action once they have found out their status. The disease continues to be stigmatised, partly because it is mainly sexually transmitted as well as due to the false belief that nothing can be done to prevent illness and death from AIDS.
By making treatment widely available, encouraging more people to disclose their status, and publicly confronting prejudice, stigma can be reduced and many more lives can be saved. This is what is already happening in places where treatment is offered in the public health sector coupled with public mobilisation. Yet many people with access to treatment continue to die because they never confront their disease and therefore never receive the help they need.
Makgatho's death is a tragic reminder at the start of 2005 of the urgent challenges our country faces in HIV prevention and treatment in the interest of saving lives. The TAC calls on the ANC to use its January 8th statement to declare 2005 the year of HIV prevention and treatment.
Hamba Kahle Makgatho Mandela.