Tuesday, 27 January 2009 3:57 PM

New Supplies of Condoms to Arrive Soon

Reports on shortage of condoms in the country until the middle of the year is not true.

Solomon Islands Planned Parenthood Association (SIPPA) Programs Officer, George Pitakoe, told Solomon Times that reports carried in the Solomon Star newspaper last week was "inaccurate".

"We have an arrangement with our co-funder and main supplier of condoms, the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) in Fiji, who have responded to our request for new supplies."

Mr. Pitakoe confirmed to Solomon Times that while it is true that there were no more condoms available in stock, "we are not waiting around until mid-year as reported but new stocks will arrive next month".

He said the shortage is highly welcomed as "in the health perspective, it is a positive sign of people now being aware of the impacts of Sexually Transmitted Infections (STI) and actually care for their health".

Mr. Pitakoe said the three provincial branches of SIPPA in Gizo, Auki and Taro who have run out of condoms will soon have their new supplies.

"The recent shortage of condom is the first of its kind to occur in our department and people who depend on free condoms from SIPPA are badly affected," he adds.

Solomon Times was informed that there will also be new supplies of condoms from the United Nation's Population Fund (UNPF) that will be distributed to the Ministry of Health, Medical centers including pharmacies and to NGOs who are distributors of free condoms including the Save the Children's Australia and World Vision.