KAMPALA-Hon. Sarah Nyirabashitsi Mateke , the state Minister for Youth and children has asked parents to spare time with their children and share with them life experience if they are to be raised into responsible citizens.
while officiating the Symposium organized with the aim of ending teenage pregnancy and Early marriage, Mateeke noted that alot of indiscipline cases are happening in the society because of the poor upbringing of some people.
“Most parents have decided to go out for survival this leaving their children with different individuals like house maids and at times Television sets. We need to strengthen parenting through talking to our children about the happenings in life and how to overcome them.”
The Minister pointed out that its the responsibility of every stake holder to ensure that all children are properly taken care of regardless of the tribe, background and other affiliations.
“You address Children’s issues to the extent that even if they are in the wrong, please guide them. These are our children, fellow Ugandans whom we need to help them since we don’t know what the future may hold.” added Mateke
Xavier Ejoyi , the Country Director for Action Aid International Uganda revealed that its during such events like symposium that they take account of what they have done in various communities , reflect on the progress as well as identifying challenges and means of addressing them.
“There are many gaps in addressing teenage pregnancies, these include social norms which don’t recognize children. These should be looked at Children not potential mothers or sexual partners.”
He added that Uganda is suffering with most of the problems because many of the teenage girls are not in school which makes it hard to prevent teenage pregnancies.
“I call upon Government through Parliament and Ministry of Finance to provide adequate financing towards programs aimed at development of women and girl child. Limited funding makes it hard to address the needs of young mothers, provision education and universal health for all Ugandans.”
Laura Criado Lafuente , on representing UNFPA country Representative , called upon partners in protection and promotion of girl child rights to use UBOS Statistics to prioritize most vulnerable girls in all their programs.
“We have arole all of us to ensure that all girls are safe and secure, go to school , have affordable health care and free from violence. Secondly, we must accelerate our efforts to end child marriages, statistics show that one in every three girls get pregnant before the age of 18.”
Laura therefore added that if all the above issues must be addressed inorder for Uganda to achieve the goals in Vision 2040.
She further commended the Government of Uganda and its partners for a number of initiatives which they have put in place to end child marriages and early pregnancy in young girls.
At the symposium , various teenage mothers shared their experience with a message to those that are still in school not to be tempted to drop out because things outside are not easy at all.
About the symposium
The symposium to end teenage pregnancy and Early marriage was organized by Action Aid in partnership with UNFPA, Ministry of Gender , Labor and Social Development with other partners.
It attracted members from Civil society Organizations, Government agencies, Ministries, Local Government and the general public.
The theme for this event was : Translating laws and Policies into appropriate support services for pregnant girls, child mothers and their babies.