NAMISINDWA – Manafwa and Namisindwa districts have on Saturday, January 11 launched an initiative to fight against the increasing cases of teenage pregnancy.
Research shows that there are over 1500 teenage mothers in the two districts.
Gathered in Namisindwa district, the local leaders blame the high cases of teenage pregnancy on culture, poverty, moral decay, parental negligence, and cross border prostitute at Lwakhakha.
Mary Goretti Kitutu, the minister for energy says that children between 13 and 17 years of age are already mothers in these districts and yet the responsible fathers are unable to take care of them.
“I personally have two hundred and thirty (250) whom I have mobilised into a skilling program where they are being rehabilitated to being of use. Namisindwa here, there are almost one hundred and fifty (150). So jointly, we are trying to see how fight this because these children range from 13 to 17 years and the boys who impregnate them cannot even support them. So the burden falls back to the parents,” she said.
Grace Watuwa Namukhura, the Namisindwa district woman member of parliament says the number of teenage mothers is growing due to poverty.
“The poverty levels in our district is increasing and it comes from the environment. Much as the population is high but the environment has also been mismanaged,” she said.
She also blamed parents saying that “we are at a high degree of moral decay and parents are not taking care of their children and the worst the time of circumcision, we take culture and forget the lives of our children.”
Mariam kilande, the Executive Director Living Love Ministry, an NGO says in this move (fighting early pregnancies and supporting young mothers), they have skilling programs like bakery, tailoring art and craft and modern farming to help them generate some income.
“We also do community sensitisation because the community needs to know the dangers of teenage pregnancies, so we do that on a monthly basis,” she added.