Name and shame those heartless civil servants

There are conscienceless, self-centred, ignorant, shameless bastards in the public sector who abuse their power.

There are conscienceless, self-centred, ignorant, shameless bastards in the public sector who abuse their power.

I receive an increasing number of claims of discrimination from civil servants in government structures at all levels.

While the intense controversy around HIV-Aids has died down, the unfortunate reality is that the unwarranted, unnecessary and self-deafeating habit of discrimina- ting and stigmatising of people living with HIV-Aids seems to be spreading like dry rot.

The irony of it all is that this form of discrimination is perpetuated by people who hold high positions in the ruling party, the same political party that intensified our collective struggle for life and against HIV-Aids.

As a country, generally, and collectively as a people, we seem to have been lulled into a false sense of security. We are consistently dropping our guard.

First and foremost, I want to urge all individuals living with HIV, particularly those who continue to be belittled and isolated and exploited, to stand proud, erect and steadfast against all forms of oppression.

Over the years many people have fought a noble battle against such preposterous and unforgivable misbehaviour.

Those who choose to swim against the tide must be uncompromisingly exposed and punished.

This is precisely the reason I believe the time has come for HIV-Aids to be a notifiable infection, despite remaining incurable.

Otherwise these faceless and spineless people, who do not deserve to belong to the human race, will continue to counter the gains we have made since the dark days of deafening silence about matters of sexuality.

Within the public sector people living with HIV are denied promotion opportunities, others are ostracised and are eventually kicked out because they cannot cope with the isolation that they are subjected to in the workplace.

I believe that South Africa has the best policies and guidelines with regard to HIV and Aids. But these remain powerful only on paper.

Such protective measures are not translated into tangible practice that benefits people living with HIV.

So it is imperative that a public audit must be commissioned to measure the inroads we have made in the 25-year history of HIV-Aids in our country.

More importantly, those heartless and insane culprits must be named and shamed.

We cannot keep silent to protect and to cover up incidents of discrimination against our people by these public servants, irrespective of the profile of particular individuals.

We must remain vigilant and ruthless in dealing with such corrupt tendencies.

People's lives cannot be equated with statistics. We cannot allow an undesirable scenario in which people's lives are dumped in the rubbish bin by stupid executives who think they can rule other people's lives based on their health status.

This is unforgivable.