African cardinal says anti-retroviral drugs better than condoms at fighting AIDS

Cardinal Peter Kodwo Appiah Turkson
Cardinal Peter Kodwo Appiah Turkson


The Archbishop of Cape Coast, Ghana has said that resources intended to fight HIV/AIDS should be directed towards anti-retroviral drugs instead of condoms, explaining that prophylactics vary in quality and give the poor a “false sense of security” which facilitates the spread of the disease.

Speaking at a press conference, Cardinal Peter Kodwo Appiah Turkson said that if resources presently put into condom production instead subsidized anti-retroviral drugs, “I think we would be happier, in Africa, for the availability of the retroviral drugs then.”

“The ordinary use of condoms, just as a stop of AIDS, is not the given, appreciable resort in our case,” said the cardinal, who is the relator-general or secretary general of the current Synod of Bishops for Africa.

“We are talking about a product of a factory and there are different qualities. There are condoms which arrive in Ghana where in the heat they burst during sex and when that is the case, then it gives the poor a false sense of security which rather facilitates the spread of HIV/AIDS,” he added, according to the Catholic Information Service for Africa (CISA).

Cardinal Turkson called for abstinence and fidelity, saying they are the key to fighting the epidemic. He also said those who are infected should refrain from sexual relations.

The Ghanaian cardinal's comments mirror the findings of AIDS experts on how to combat the spread of the disease in Africa.

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