Mon, 07 Feb 2000

Missing sentence

In the process of editing my letter Concrete action needed (The Jakarta Post, Feb. 5, 2000), it is unfortunate that a sentence was lost and other changes made which changed the sense of what I wrote. I did not say that the number of addicts could increase by 50 percent or more in the next few years. What I said was as follows:

"It is disappointing that the new consortium appears to ignore, or is perhaps unaware of, the connection between drug use and the spread of HIV, the virus which causes AIDS. Initial indications are that at least 10 percent of injecting drug users in Jakarta are already infected with HIV. Experience elsewhere indicates that this will increase to 50 percent or even 70 percent within one to two years, unless immediate and urgent steps are taken."

There is no doubt also that the number of users will increase, although I cannot predict at what rate. But this will only add to the total number of those who become infected with HIV and thus the huge burden upon the country. In addition, this will add to the very worrying level of overdose deaths which my letter also referred to.



Note: We apologize for the missing sentence and any inconvenience this caused.

-- Editor