Lehlohonolo Mathetsa’€™s husband died on the 18th of February due to an AIDS related illness. He had been on the ARV waiting list since October, when his CD 4 count was only 59. ‘€œAs he was ill, they gave him tablets called Bactrim. He was told there were no drugs’€, said Mathetsa.

Evelyn has a five year old daughter who has been on ARVs since 2004. ‘€œThey (doctors) said the child was resistant to the treatment she had always been taking. They prescribed different medicines for her. When I got to the dispensary, they told me the third drug was not available’€, said Evelyn.

Non-governmental organisations in the Free State believe that many AIDS patients died as a result of the moratorium. They put the blame on the provincial government. ‘€œIn the Free State, we have been losing about 30 people a day because of this shortage of drugs’€, said Sello Mokhaliphi, the Free State spokesperson of the Treatment Action Campaign.      

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