By Chioma Obinna
As the world on Wednesday, marked the 2020 International Condom Day, a new report to mark the Day in Nigeria has shown that 72 per cent of Nigerians don’t use condoms regularly.
According to the data report, Nigeria needs about 600 million condoms annually and closing this gap requires leveraging the relative strengths of all sectors – public, media, social marketing, and commercial partners to enhance the sustainability of condom promotion, especially for key population groups in high burden areas of Nigeria.
Against this background, NOIPolls in partnership with AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) and the National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA) conducted a nationwide public opinion poll regarding condom accessibility and use in Nigeria.
However, the report found that only 28 per cent (almost 3 in 10) of Nigerians use condoms regularly
The survey also revealed that an overwhelming majority of 92 per cent (9 in 10) of adult Nigerians were aware of what a condom is and what it is used for added that it was encouraging given the essential role condom plays in preventing HIV/AIDS and other STDs.
“With respect to perception and attitude on condoms, 63 per cent of Nigerians admitted that the first thing that comes to their mind when they hear the word condom is sexual pleasure, while 45 per cent disclosed that they instantly think of promiscuity when they see someone with a condom.
Opinion on general consumption patterns revealed that 83 per cent of adult Nigerians believe that people should use condoms. However, opinion on personal consumption showed that only 34 per cent of Nigerians admitted that they use condoms.
“Of this number, only 28 percent of them stated that they use condoms consistently. It is important to note that this is 34 per cent of the general population as the survey did not screen for condom use among high-risk individuals. The major reason cited among those that do not use condoms is that it is against their religion (34 per cent).”
“Analysis by geo-political zones showed the majority of resident in the North-East (98 per cent) use condoms mainly for family planning and for preventing unwanted pregnancy while 47 per cent and 38 per cent of respondents from the South-South and South-East respectively use condoms mainly for protection against STDs.
“Of the 66 per cent of the general population that stated that they do not use condoms, the main reason cited by 34 per cent was that it is against their religious belief. Analysis by geographical location showed that the North-West region (78 per cent) and the North-East region (74 per cent) had more respondents who said that they do not use condoms.
It is important to note that 17 per cent of those who do not use condoms say they do so because they either do not like it or that it is not pleasurable and the South-West (25 per cent) and the North-West (24 per cent) had the most respondents who stated these reasons.
To foster publicity of condom in the society, “Interventions such as providing free condoms could also help increase the level of consistent condom use in the country for effective prevention of HIV and STDs, especially for individuals who find condoms to be inappropriate. These are some of the key findings from the condom poll conducted in the week commencing February 3rd, 2020.”