Wednesday, July 17, 2024

Teenage pregnancies continues to be a problem in Eastern Province

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Kasenengwa District has recorded over 800 teen pregnancies from January to June this year. A total of 817 teenage pregnancies where recorded in the last six months out of which 38 were aged between 10 and 14 while 779 were aged between 15 and 19 years, respectively.

Authority in the area is unsettled with the status qua which compared to last year , 654 teenage pregnancies were recorded during same period last year.

District Commissioner Rachael Phiri who confirmed this has since called for stakeholders’ collaboration in addressing the trend that is affecting the adolescent’s wellbeing and future.

Ms Phiri was speaking yesterday during the adolescents’ sexual and reproductive health rights technical working group meeting.

Ms Phiri said sensitisation on the dangers of early sex and drug abuse among others have been intensified and targeted at specific areas.

‘’To reduce early marriages, teen pregnancies, early sex, substance abuse and most of the attributes affecting the adolescents, 10 hot spot areas in the district on adolescent pregnancies have been identified and sensitisation on the dangers of the same have been intensified,’’ she said.

Adolescents’ reproductive health services are cardinal as they affect a crucial transition period of puberty which is when young people are influenced by biological changes.

And Chief Madzimawe of the Ngoni people said he will continue fighting against early marriages and teen pregnancies.

The traditional leader disclosed that his chiefdom only recorded 15 cases of teenage pregnancies and managed to dissolve seven child marriages from January to June this year.

He said outreach programmes on the dangers of teen pregnancies and early marriages have been intensified as his target is to record zero cases.

Chief Madzimawe pointed out that the ban to initiate young girls into housewives traditionally called as “ Chinamwali “ is still in effect.

Chinamwali is a traditional practice where girls who have come of age are quarantined and initiated by Aphungu (elderly women) on personal hygiene issues and the bedroom dance to satisfy men.

He added that the ban has contributed greatly to the reduction of teen pregnancies and child marriages in his chiefdom.

‘’I will not relent in the fight against teen pregnancies and early marriages as my target is to record zero cases in the chiefdom.

“ The chiefdom only recorded 15 cases of teen pregnancies and seven child marriages were dissolved in the first and second quarter of 2022,’’ Chief Madzimawe said.

He said he will soon hold a youth indaba in his chiefdom where various issues affecting the young people will be discussed.

4 COMMENTS

  1. Just let them marry each other. Why are you stopping them. They are having children anyway. Why not let them have children within a marriage? I will fight this, I will fight that, are you God? Stop following western culture that doesn’t work in Africa.

  2. A teenager can be of legal age. In that circumstance how does this become an issue? The problem you should be solving is that of defilement of minors. Women are recommended to have children at young age

  3. ’38 were aged between 10 and 14.’ Only those above 12 years and 364 days are teenagers. The statistician is being unhelpful. If 1 was below 13 and 37 were between 13 and 14 that would be a misrepresentation of facts.

  4. Outright ban of deep-rooted traditional practices might not be of much help
    Why not modify the punghu teachings to suit the times instead of relying on the school system?

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