Reality TV star and self-confessed retired prostitute Zodwa Wabantu has called for an end to stigmas around HIV/Aids and ARV treatment.
This after the controversial entertainer shared a video clip from her show Zodwa Wabantu: Uncensored, showing how people reacted when she accidentally dropped a bunch of ARV pills, which she refers to as amaJacksons.
The video clip, followed by an Instagram post where she asked people what time they took their ARVs, sparked a fiery debate on the TL.
Speaking to TshisaLIVE, Zodwa said after the video and IG post, people have been asking her if she's really HIV positive.
The entertainer said those interested in her status were missing the point of the conversation.
“Whether I have HIV or not, is not for anybody but the person I'm f***ing to know, however I want the conversation about taking ARVs to start because it can save lives.
“People are dying when there's medication that can save them. People are dying because they are scared of stigma attached to taking amaJacksons, and that's a shame because these people could choose life. There is nothing sadder than people dying because they are scared of how others will react or what others will say if they see their pills.”
Zodwa said she's known since season one, particularly after the Khanyi Mbau confrontation episode, that people have questioned her HIV status.
“I know that people have asked the question about my status. Others don't even ask, they make up their minds that I'm positive because of my lifestyle, but I don't care. Whether I'm positive or not is none of their business. They can continue speculating, but what I want my fans to understand is that there's no shame in taking ARVs.
“The video was a chance for people to introspect, I want them to search themselves and ask themselves important life questions,” she said.
Reacting to the episode and her post, Zodwa fans sang her praises for igniting the conversation.
Here are some of the reactions she's received since the “ARVs” episode aired:
I love Zodwa Wabantu publicly coming out about taking ARVs and breaking the stigma.
— ☁️IX (@thezulunn) April 17, 2021
— Yoliswa Mkhwane 🇿🇦 (@mkhwanekid_rsa) April 17, 2021
I never watch Zodwa wabantu.I'm happy I did https://t.co/SVbGB1JaNt it whatever,I think she wanted to come out about her HIV status and teach about the importance of taking RAV's and being positive about https://t.co/WqXYKKscWD reservation is her vulgar language.#ZodwaUncensored
— uMaShenge (@eFdeebeee) April 17, 2021
— Ⓖⓞⓞⓖⓛ696 (@Googl696) April 17, 2021