The Ministry of Health says it has circumcised over 1.4 million males throughout the country since 2009 and has invited more men to take part in the exercise.

In an interview, spokesperson Dr Kennedy Malama said the Ministry has now targeted to circumcise 108, 000 males between 1st April and 12th May, 2017.

“Zambia started implementing voluntary medical male circumcision as one of the methods to prevent the transmission of HIV from a female to a male in 2009, from that period, over 1.4 million male have been circumcised in Zambia,” Dr Malama said.

“And as a country, in 2016 alone, we circumcised a total of 309, 000 males, and that was about 73% percent of our target last year. So this year, we will be conducting what we call April voluntary medical male circumcision campaign-month and it will start from 1st April-12th May 2017. We appealed to all male Zambians to support this campaign by turning out in large numbers.”

He advised the males to visit health centers countrywide for the exercise.

“Each province has been given a target to achieve. For instance Lusaka province has been given a target of about 21,000 males to be circumcised, Western 19,000, Eastern about 12,000 to mention but a few. So we appeal to our people to support this voluntary medical male circumcision because it has a number of benefits,” Dr Malama said.

Dr Malama also assured Zambians of safety among males during the circumcision procedure as it was done by professional health workers.

“As you know, male circumcision is done by health workers in a safe place. Circumcision contributes significantly to reduced chances of contracting HIV by at least 60 percent and also improves hygiene in males. It also reduces the chances of getting canal cancer or cancer of the manhood, and it also reduces the chances of a male harboring or keeping the virus on the manhood, which we call Human Papilloma Virus (HPV). This is the virus contributes to the development of cervical cancer in women. So you can see that apart from the contribution in prevention of HIV, male circumcision has other benefits and we need to promote it,” said Dr Malama.