Sembabule struggles to end teenage pregnancy

Sembabule struggles to end teenage pregnancy

The number of teenagers getting pregnant and dropping out of school in Ssembabule has gone up, threatening the district’s efforts in fighting HIV/Aids.

District officials say some of the girls aged between 15 and 18 have ended up resorting to commercial sex to make ends meet after dropping out of school especially in Mateete and Lwebitakuli townships.

Leaders attribute the high school dropout rates to parental negligence, poverty and establishment of many lodges and bars that hire young girls to work as waitresses.

Mr Steven Senyonjo, the Lwebitakuli Sub-county chairperson, says many of these girls have abandoned their homes and turned to the streets to make quick money.

Data from the district education office shows that completion rate for both girls and boys in the area is as low as 35 per cent, with more girls dropping out of school.

Statistics further indicate that in 2014, 2015 and 2016, a staggering 250, 254 and 300 pupils respectively, missed Primary Leaving Examinations with girls taking the biggest percentage, many of whom reportedly dropped out because of teenage pregnancy and early marriages.