Rising teenage pregnancies blamed on school closure

School Girls Marching During the Launch of the 2nd Phase of the Girl's Education South Sudan Program in Juba - August 21, 2019 - File Photo. Credit: Majak Malak/GESS.

Teenage pregnancies and child marriages are increasing across the country due to the closure of schools, the ministry of education has said

In March, the government suspended learning institutions to prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease.

The move reportedly led to a drastic increase in early marriages and teenage pregnancies as hundreds of school-going children were sent home.

Late last month, the Ministry of General Education and Instructions reported 23 cases of teenage pregnancies in Western and Eastern Equatoria states.

However, according to the latest round of data collected by the Ministry of Education, the number of pregnancies has risen to 108. Most of them are girls between 13 and 18 years.

In a statement seen by Eye Radio, the acting First Director-General in the Ministry Odomtula Hillary says Torit County alone has 49 cases, while 59 others were reported in Lopit West, Magwi, Pageri, Ayachi and Ikwoto counties in the former Torit State.

“We have so far encountered about 49 from the three Payams that is Omudong Payam, Nyong Payam that is Torit Municipal Council then Bur Payam,” said Loboi Clement, Torit County Education Director said.

“We have so far collected all the data through the help of the school headteachers that is why we have come up with all the data which we have submitted already,” he added.

Source: Eye Radio Network

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