Senior Chief Chipepo of the Tonga people of the Gwembe Valley, in Chirundu district, has urged the government to halt the teaching of Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) in schools.
Speaking during the commemoration of the Day of National Prayer, Fasting, Repentance and Reconciliation held at the showgrounds in Lusaka, Snr Chief Chipepo said CSE sexualizes children, promotes alien sexual education and practices, and was harmful to children.
Snr Chief Chipepo said CSE was not an answer to challenges related to teen pregnancies, child marriages, and sexual abuse against adolescents as argued by its promoters. He said CSE was against Zambia’s cultural, traditional and religious values and urged government to abandon its teaching in schools.
The traditional leader becomes the second one after Paramount Chief Chitimukulu of the Bemba people condemned the teaching of condemned CSE. Paramount Chitimukulu expressed concern that CSE was graphic and was not age-appropriate especially that the curriculum targeted children as young as those attending schools from Grade 5 to Grade 7.
Many stakeholders including the Church, have condemned the implementation of Comprehensive Sexuality Education in Zambia citing concerns and sensitivities. He stated that it violates cultural, traditional and family values.
CSE is also condemned for introducing children to other gender identities beyond male and female, and for forcing children to accept and respect the LGBT community. Promoters of Comprehensive Sexuality Education, UNFPA, UNESCO and IPPF contend that CSE will help reduce teen pregnancies, child sexual abuse and child marriages.
The agencies have collaborated with Curriculum Development Centre at the Ministry of Education to integrate and roll out CSE in the national education curriculum. Vice President Inonge Wina informed Parliament that the government had halted the full implementation of CSE until a multi-sectoral technical working group met with stakeholders and ironed out all the concerns surrounding CSE.
Meanwhile, Chief Chipepo condemned the abuse of young people by politicians. He said the politicians use other people’s children in political violence. “Let the politicians behave as human beings not like animals. We refuse the spirit of recruiting our children as cadres, leaving their own children,”.
He said political leaders should afford education and job opportunities to young people and not abuse them for violence.