As the world commemorates AIDS Day the Acting National Commissioner of Police has encouraged police officers to seize the opportunity and test for HIV.

This was during the joint commemoration of the International World AIDS Day and the 2018 Police Health Day held at Sibane Hotel on November 28. Senior Deputy National Commissioner – Lydia Dlamini who was representing the Acting National Commissioner stated that the theme for this year’s World Day is “Know Your HIV Status”, therefore all officers are urged to test and know their status. She stated that testing is essential for expanding treatment and ensuring that all those living with HIV can lead a healthy and productive life. She further revealed that knowing one’s status is crucial in achieving the country’s 95-95-95 targets which are 95% people tested, 95 % people treated and 95 % HIV free.

In regards to the Police Health Day, Dlamini stated that the well-being of officers is invaluable given that a healthy workforce is a productive workforce. She revealed that in contextualizing the health and wellness of its staff, the Police Service has embraced a four pronged approach focusing on physical, mental, social as well as spiritual health and wellness. She stated that these variables are critical in policing as police officers need to be physically fit and have a mental agility that is always on top in order to perform at optimum levels.

Speaking on behalf of the Ministry of Health, Gcinile Buthelezi applauded the Police Service for its efforts towards issues of health and further challenged the organization to play a crucial role in achieving the 95-95-95 targets. She stated that as the country celebrates World AIDS Day, the idea is to be careful that all the gains amassed are not lost.

The Director of NERCHA – Khanya Mabuza revealed that as the country commemorates World AIDS day, the overriding motto is to “Leave No One Behind”. He stated that the challenge for the next twelve months is to galvanize individuals to test and know their status because positive people who have no clue of their status are a risk to themselves and others. He applauded the Police Service for assuming a leading role in dealing with issues of HIV/AIDS and reaffirmed NERCHA’s support towards all Police Health initiatives.

The joint commemoration was preceded by a workshop to validate the Royal Eswatini Police Service Health and Inclusiveness Training Manual which was attended by the members of the Police Executive as well as Regional Operations Officers.