A veteran midwife in the Upper East region, Mary Azika, has chastised men with preference for “tight vagina”, saying such sexual partners have a lot in common with an apprentice who is eager to exhibit in public skills yet to be acquired.
Of deep concern to the celebrated midwife is the observable trend in which several women, in a desperate bid to attract the men who say they enjoy penetration only when it is tight, are now resorting to harmful concoctions and gels to tighten their private parts.
“Women are inserting concoction into their vagina claiming they want the vagina to be tight. Some would insert garlic, all sorts of concoction and cotton soaked with gel and pushed into the vagina so that men would say it is tight. These concoctions can expose you to cervical cancer. Any man who wants vagina to be tight before he penetrates doesn’t know sex. Forget that person.
“If the vagina is tight and the man forces to penetrate, there are cuts around the vagina walls. And for men, if you are entering and the vagina is tight, that’s why you easily get HIV. Through penetration, if there is friction, there are cuts around the penis, there are cuts around the vagina walls, there is blood contact; so, you easily get HIV,” Madam Azika cautioned.
She was speaking at a seminar organised in Bolgatanga by the Upper East Regional branch of the Distance Education Students Association of Ghana (DESAG). Sponsored by AQUABOLG Natural Mineral Water, the event was themed: “10 years of distance education and its impact on socio-economic growth and development of the Upper East Region: A transformational force.”
“Don’t let the men deceive you, claiming that the vagina is supposed to be tight, so that when they are penetrating, they would enjoy. They are causing harm to you. There is no loose vagina, please. Several babies pass through the vagina and it’s still the same. After delivery, it goes back to its former state,” she stressed.
Northern Region has least HIV Prevalence Rate
The midwife also urged women to do regular screening for cervical cancer, stating that a delay in doing so could prove fatal in the end.
“The only prevention for cervical cancer is to go for screening. When you go for screening and you are positive, though you are positive, you haven’t gotten to cancerous stage yet; something can be done; there is treatment for it. But when it gets to the cancerous stage, they will look at the degree.
“If they think they should remove the whole uterus and the cervix for you to survive, they would do that. But if they see that where you have gotten to, there is nothing they can do, they would only put you on drug and manage you till you die,” Madam Azika stated.
Her talk also opened up concerns about HIV prevalence rate in Ghana where the Northern region is said to have the lowest rate of 0.7%, according to the 2016 Sentinel Survey Report. The Upper East region follows with 1.7%, the Central region 1.8%, the Greater Accra region 2.4%, the Upper West and the Western regions 2.5%, the Ashanti and the Eastern regions 2.6% whilst the Brong Ahafo and the Volta regions have the highest prevalence rate of 2.7%. The national prevalence rate, which was 1.8% in 2015, rose to 2.6% in 2016.
Stigma and Discrimination responsible for increased rate in Upper East- GAC
HIV prevalence rate in the Upper East shot up from 1.5% in 2015 to 1.7% in 2016. Bawku, with 2.4%, led the region in 2015. That figure dropped in 2016 to 1.4%.
Navrongo, capital of the Kassena-Nankana Municipality, whose rate was 1.8% in 2015, now has the region’s highest rate of 2.8% as captured in 2016 survey report.
Bolgatanga, the regional capital, moved up from 1.4% in 2015 to 2.3% in 2016. The Builsa area (north and south) who showed a zero-percent prevalence in 2015 saw a climb to 0.5% in 2016.
The Ghana AIDS Commission (GAC) has attributed the increase in the region’s prevalence rate to stigma and discrimination.
“Stigma and discrimination of people living with HIV is still an issue. Because people don’t know about the modes of transmission of HIV, they keep stigmatising those living with HIV in the Upper East. I interacted with some of the people living with the [disease], they were telling me they were not treated properly.
“The Ghana AIDS Commission has a policy, the Ghana AIDS Commission Act 2016, which states that if you stigmatise a person living with HIV you can be sent to court. Based on that one, we are currently engaging stakeholders so that people would try to treat people with HIV in a respectful manner, love and not discriminate against them,” Gifty Apiung Aninanya, the Upper East Regional Technical Coordinator of the Ghana AIDS Commission, told Starr News.