Girl Child Initiative Uganda (GCIU) a Community Based Organisation (CBO) in Wakiso district has appealed to Government and the Schools administrations to create a condusive environment that would enable pregnant students go back to school despite their current state.
In his last address to the nation on the COVID-19 situation, President Museveni announced the reopening of schools for candidates classes of P.7, S.4, S.6 and finalists at tartiary and university level.
In a press statement, GCIU Executive Director, Nixon Segawa appreciated the move by government to reopen schools biting that this will reduce on the increasing cases of teenage pregnancies and childhood marriages.
“The decision is on a welcome note due to the enormous effects that most girls in the country have faced as a result of the COVID-19 lockdown measures that have been impossed on the country since March,” Segawa said.
Segawa said that with the prolonged stay out of school and without the support system of teachers and school administrators, many girls are left vulnerable to teenage pregnancy, early childhood marriage and gender-based violence, among other devastating effects of Covid-19.
According to a Police report, 4,442 cases of defilement were reported between January and April 2020. Sauti reported 800 cases of sexual abuse between January and May 2020, including increased cases of teenage pregnancy.
Segawa said that with all these cases, government and school administrations to create an enabling environment that will allow pregnant students and finalists to go back to school, register and sit for their final examinations.
“These candidate and finalists should not be left to lose their valuable future as a result of being pregnant but should be allowed to also go back, catch up with their studies, sit for their final exams so as to redeem their future. Educating a girl child is key to a thriving society, these girls should not be left out,” Segawa said
He appealed to the parents to offer the vulnerable girls all the necessary support and care that they need as they go through the trying moment of their lifetime.
“To the girls, pregnancy is not the end of life, you can always pick it up and don’t allow to lose your future. We encourage you to go ahead and register and sit for your final examinations,” Segawa noted.