The story of Murangá County in Kenya. This is what appeared in one of our local dailies on 2nd November 2013… “The Ministry of Health has distributed more than three million condoms in Murang’a county following the payment of the annual tea bonus. The distribution which targets residents in the seven sub-counties began last Friday. Murang’a county public health officer Paul Kamau said the condoms are to encourage safe sex among farmers following an influx of sex workers out for a share of the tea windfall. Kamau said the condoms have been distributed to lodging houses, bars, restaurants and public toilets. He said the main objective of the exercise is to prevent infections of HIV/ Aids and other sexually transmitted diseases. Tells abound at this time of the year of farmers squandering their tea bonus on sex workers”… This is just one among the many that we have heard. There is maize harvest season in Uasin Gishu and Transzoia cane harvest in Bumgoma and Kakamega, Tea in Kericho among others. Harvesting and payment of peoples’ hardwork and the prostitution increase promoted by our government by distribution of condoms in a bid to keep our people “safe” from infection by HIV. Are we really keeping them safe? What motivates people to use a condom?

The condom is the most commonly used barrier method of contraception in the world (PLTP). According to mainstream scientific sources, its efficacy has been grossly overstated by its promoters. After the use of just 10 condoms, the probability of at least one failure is 57%, according to the authoritative Contraceptive Technology. The book’s authors tallied the results of 15 studies of condoms used during heterosexual intercourse and found that 4.6% of all of the condoms broke and 3.4% of them partially or completely slipped off, and found a total failure rate of 8.3%. That means that about 1 in 12 condom uses results in failure. This implies that the user is exposed to all infections from sex including HIV. In the book, The Case Against Condoms: The Scientific and Moral Basis for the Teaching of the Catholic Church on Preventing the Spread of Disease by Alfonso Cardinal Lopez Trujillo and Brian Clowes Ph.D – Cardinal Lopez-Trujillo delivers a searing critique of the promotion of condoms as a means to reduce AIDS, unintended pregnancy, and various sexually transmitted diseases. Current condom research, as explained by Cardinal Lopez, makes it abundantly clear they do not provide adequate protection against unintended pregnancy, AIDS, male gonorrhea, or anything else. The recent report in Kenya indicating that currently most infections are occurring among the married couples augments this argument. Why for instance does a couple who got married uninfected get the highest risk of infection. It is because; we have the country keeps propagating “weka condom mpangoni” and “Mbugua amaenitosha” regardless of the married status of the parties. Research indicates that condoms do not eliminate the risk, they just reduce the risk at a whooping 8.3%. Gone are the days of Jimmy Gathu’s acha mpango wa kando. From this reason why won’t there be infections in marriage?

Further failures to protect can be associated to the facts that; CONDOMS HAVE PORES (HOLES):  C.M. Roland, in a study published in the top rated rubber professional Journal “rubber World Vol. 208 No. 3 of June 1993” titled “The barrier performance of latex rubber”, revealed that, latex rubber has tiny microscopic naturally occurring pores or holes when latex rubber is molded to the thickness of condom. These pores measures between 4 and 10 microns in diameter with an average of 7 microns. HIV is only 0.1 microns in diameter. A 7 micron hole is 70 times larger than the HIV. The virus will easily pass through. The hole is huge compared to the virus. In 1977, Barlow and colleagues, long before HIV was in the picture hand published in the LANCET, one of the medical world’s most respected Journals (1977 vol. 11(80420, pp 812) an article on the condom and Gonorrhea and the significance of porosity in condoms. Herman et al presented a study titled “a simulated psychological test of latex condoms” at the fifth International conference on AIDS in 1989, (Abstracts WAP 101) in Montreal showing that there was marked permeability to microspheres bigger than HIV through the condoms. Catey et al 1992 in a study titled “Effectiveness of latex condoms as barrier to HIV sized particles under conditions of simulated use” and published in (Sexually Transmitted Diseases 1992: 19 pages 230-234) showed leakage of HIV sized particles across 40% of the membranes of the latex condoms which they studied. These are only part of studies done establishing the fact of pores. The facts are not philosophical, religious or even moral. These are simply cold medical and biophysical facts; CONDOMS BREAK DURING USE:  It has been known for a long time that condoms break during sexual activity. Two large well controlled studies involved over 6,000 experienced condom users in a clinic at Birmingham, England reported that 52% of the participants reported condom breakage during sexual activity in the preceding 3 months. Breakage of condoms is therefore a reality. A broken condom may result in a baby but where the scenario is a doomsday disease like HIV, it is a mallet of life and death; there can be SPILLING OF SEMINAL FLUID:  In 1990, Canadian Consultant, Dr. Richard Gordon, President of the Canadian Society for theoretical biology, University of Manitoba in Winnipeg carried out the famous Red Dye Test. A number of married couples who agreed to participate in testing of condoms had a harmless red dye inserted into the lips of the condoms prior to intercourse. After each coitus in which, the man withdrew whilst fully erect, it was found that the red dye had spilled over the rim into the birth canal of all women who participated. He clearly showed that his spillage is one of the major causes of condom failure as and contraceptive one of the major ways that HIV and other STDs are transmitted by infected people using condoms; Condoms SLIP OFF:  This is one of the commonest “accidents” to occur with the condoms. This happens especially when there is delay in withdrawal and erection is lost. A lot of health care providers will remember occasions when the condoms have to be fished from the birth canal. When this happens one is exposed to this deadly virus; STORAGE MODE:  Condoms should be stored in a dark cool place away from direct sunlight. Condoms in transit occasionally are stored in containers which are oven hot during summer and frozen during winter. This fatally damages the condoms so as, to be absolutely useless in preventing pregnancy let alone HIV and finally; DAMAGES CAUSED BY OIL-BASED LUBRICANTS USED DURING COITUS:  Used during sexual activity these oils weaken and damage latex rubber. Vaseline or other oils that are in common use have the same effect.

The more people use condoms, the more they become infected with HIV since we have seen that condoms don’t prevent HIV transmission. Chastity is plainly the only humane approach to solving these problems. There is a dismal picture of their “effectiveness” and further underscores the need for strong promotion of chastity. Now considered to be one of the world’s earliest and best success stories in overcoming HIV, Uganda has experienced substantial declines in prevalence, and evidently incidence, during at least the 1990s to 2001. This according to a report entitled What Happened in Uganda? Declining HIV Prevalence, Behaviour change, and the National Response is attributed to behavioral changes that have been identified in several surveys and qualitative studies. These changes include changes in age of sexual debut, casual and commercial sex trends partner reduction, but mostly due to risk avoidance. Change is age sexual debut implies teenagers and youth are encouraged to abstain, while risk avoidance implies that you totally abstain if you are not yet married and remain faithful to your spouse. Mother to child transmission and mixing of blood in case of accidents has been relatively controlled. Uganda, whose president and first lady chose to highlight abstinence and monogamy instead of condoms in their nation’s AIDS prevention efforts, has by far the best record in combating HIV in the Third World. Uganda’s Abstinence first and be faithful in a relationship program reduced the adult HIV infection rate from 18% to 7%. Statistics show that while both Thailand and Philippines recorded their first case of HIV/ AIDS in 1987, The Philippines has chose to emphasize abstinence and monogamy while deemphasizing condoms, and her HIV rate remains a low 113 per million people, according to the United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS). Thailand on the other hand, a country with a similar-sized population in the same region of the world, has emphasized condom use and has an HIV infection rate 80 times higher.

The Bible says “My people die due to lack of knowledge”. Brands and products are marketed and massively advertised and even promoted by organizations and sometimes state organs. The choice is ours to buy or not to. We can keep marketing condoms and convincing ourselves of how good it is to be unfaithful especially in marriage and that we are safe as long as we use a condom. Research has shown that the safety in a condom is a fallacy. Safe sex is a fallacy. Condoms fail, that’s a fact. The choice to keep using it still remains ours. The choice to live or to perish is ours, at least where condoms are concerned…