Women Fighting AIDS in Kenya, Action Aid, and the Kenya Treatment Access Movement
July 24, 2006

Health civil society groups and people living with HIV are among a cross section of Kenyans calling on the Members of Parliament to reject the proposed amendments on the Industrial Property Act.

The normally-benign Miscellaneous Amendments Bill, which includes deceitful and dangerous amendments to Kenyas 2001 Industrial Property Act, is now one step closer to being passed in Parliament. The MPs are seemingly unaware of the implications these amendments will have on access to medicines for Kenyans.

The Misc Amendments Bill had its second reading on 20 July 2006 and only the Attorney General and Mutula Kilonzo acknowledged the controversy contained in the Bill regarding access to medicines. Otherwise, very little was said from the floor of Parliament. The Chair of the Parliamentary Health Committee was not even present, and the report from the responsible committee (Departmental Committee on Administration of Justice and Legal Affairs) did not even mention the IP Act, the proposed amendments, nor their impact on health care in Kenya.

We as the Kenyan Health Civil Society Organizations and Persons Living with HIV, in solidarity with all Kenyan citizens, are protesting against the attempt to assault on our lives said Monique Wanjala of WOFAK (Women Fighting AIDS in Kenya).


If these amendments are passed, they will seriously affect our ability to access the medicines we need and Kenya will be taking a giant step BACKWARDS in the fight against HIV, TB, malaria and other health emergencies.

Kenya will witness a drastic increase in prices for various drugs. If these amendments are passed, there will be a enormous increase in prices of medicines for HIV, and other serious diseases, making medicines far out of reach for majority of Kenyans.

These same amendments were attempted in the same devious way in 2002. They were soundly rejected as being against the interests of Kenyans. Nothing has changed since 2002, and they must be REJECTED AGAIN by all honest, responsible, and public-health conscious Members of Parliament, said Dr Ignatius Kibe of the United Civil Society Coalition on HIV, TB and Malaria.


It is obvious that both of these would be huge challenges, and would cause unnecessary delays for procurement processes, higher prices, and limit thegovernments ability to efficiently respond to the needs of Kenyans, said Dr John Wasonga, a medical doctor involved in the fight against HIV.

If the amendments to the IP Act are passed in Parliament, Kenyas treatment programs are at risk, and Kenyans lives are at risk.

Kenyans fought for this Act in 2001, and thousands continue to benefit from it. The MPs have a chance now to intervene and reject those amendments while the Bill is at Committee Stage and before it goes for its third reading.

For information, please contact

Monique WANJALA of Women Fighting AIDS in Kenya - 0722 692 256

Ludfine ANYANGO of ActionAid International Kenya - 0733 583 506

James KAMAU of Kenya Treatment Access Movement (KETAM) - 0722 886 694

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