24 Nov 2008

Papua Aids activist slams microchipping bylaw plans

2:02 pm on 24 November 2008

An AIDS activist in Indonesia says moves by the Papua provincial legislative council to pass a bylaw that requires some HIV/AIDS patients to be implanted with microchips are abhorrent.

Under the bylaw, patients who are considered to have shown aggressively sexual behaviour could be implanted with a microchip to monitor their activity.

Councilor John Manangsang says the Council wants preventative measures to stop the spread of the disease in Papua which accounts for a reported 47 percent of Indonesia's HIV/AIDS cases.

However Gunawan Engkukusumo, a consultant to Family Health International in Papua, says cutting the infection rate in Papua requires more education and better health care at the community level.

He says microchipping patients is a violation of human rights, and dismisses hopes that it could stop the spread of the disease.

"No... this is bullshit. We can stop the disease if we take action very seriously. Education is very very important."

Gunawan Engkukusumo