The former AIDS clinical coordinator, Dr. Sir Prince Ramsey, has chimed in on the national debate regarding whether or not legislation should be put in place to punish individuals for taking to social media claiming that others are infected with HIV.
“I don’t think that that is necessary. You are not going to be able to stop people from talking, so I take that with a grain of salt. People have always been malicious especially when it comes to HIV and AIDS. I’ve been hearing that for over 20 years and nobody has died from that as yet,” Ramsey said.
He went on to say that since the 1980s people have been talking about other people having AIDS, therefore it no longer surprises him.
Ramsey attributes this practice to ignorance on behalf of the accusers and says that it makes him feel as if the 30-plus years of work that he put into HIV awareness and curbing the stigma of the disease has amounted to naught.
Social media erupted on Tuesday with the voice note of a male accusing a female of having and giving him HIV. The man went on to call the accused by name and to point out her place of employment. Subsequently, another voice note emerged of a female refuting the earlier claims and chalking up the accusations to the wrath of a jilted lover. The female’s voice note was accompanied by what seems to be a negative HIV test dated June 28, 2018.
Some social media users were outraged by the initial voice note and referred to the accuser’s actions as being despicable, petty and appalling. Many called for the authorities to step in and for the accused to seek litigation against her accuser.
There were individuals also who said the matter should be investigated and action be taken against anyone who deliberately spreads HIV/AIDS.
Efforts to contact the acting Commissioner of Police, Atlee Rodney, and Inspector Lester Bagot for their take on the matter were unsuccessful up to press time.