Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Indonesian minister sparks anger with HIV comments

05 February 2015, 12:57

Jakarta - Indonesia's trade minister sparked anger Wednesday after saying that second-hand clothes could spread HIV as he campaigned to stop the import of used garments.

Rachmat Gobel was quoted in local media saying used clothes could cause "skin diseases, HIV. It is true, we have seen a lab result".

Indonesian officials have expressed alarm at what they say is a flood of cheap, second-hand clothing flooding the country, saying that it is damaging the local textile industry.

Gobel quickly apologised after his comments were widely reported, posting on Twitter he had meant to say that "wearing used clothes can transmit many kinds of diseases".

Also read: Kenyans demand personal Pat Robertson apology on AIDS comment

But this did little to calm the public's anger, with Twitter user Siwiestu saying that it was "such a shame that a highly educated man... still misunderstands HIV".

"Oh dear, did the minister go to school?" commented Siti Umayah, adding: "His statement is embarassing".

Gobel, a wealthy businessman, has been trade minister since October in the new government of President Joko Widodo.

The human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), which can lead to AIDS, is mainly transmitted via sexual incourse or drug addicts sharing equipment. Since 1981, about 78 million people have been infected by HIV, according to UN figures.


Tags japan aids

Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
DP Ruto accuses Raila of selling ...

DP Wiliam Ruto has castigated Raila Odinga for seeking western support to fund his 2017 election bid. Read more...

Submitted by
William Korir
Peter Kenneth announces Uhuru 201...

Peter Kenneth has announced that he will support President Uhuru Kenyatta in the 2017 elections. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilon Ochieng
Labour Party to dump both Jubilee...

The Labour Party of Kenya is likely to avoid supportoing both the CORD and Jubilee factions during the 2017 General Elections. Read more...

Submitted by
William Korir
Ukambani MP quits Jubilee, to run...

An Ukambani MP has quit the Jubilee Party, citing voter apathy as his reason behind leaving the ruling coalition. Read more...

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
Government launches probe into Po...

The government has launched an inquiry into the circumstances that could have led to two National Police Service helicopter accidents in August and September this year. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilwon Ochieng
Deputy Governor's ally found with...

The EACC has recovered KES 2 million in fake currency from a close ally of Deputy Governor for Tharaka Nithi Eliud Mati. Read more...