Homa Bay Governor Gladys Wanga and Woman Rep Joyce Osogo have teamed up in efforts to fight the high prevalence of teenage pregnancies in the county.
The two leaders said it was regrettable that according to the latest Kenya Demographic and Health Survey, teen pregnancies in the county stood at 23.2 per cent compared to the national prevalence of 14.8 per cent.
Wanga said they have embarked on empowering school girls with information on the dangers of involvement in sexual relationships.
She said they were working closely with law enforcement agencies to ensure people who violate the sexual rights of girls are apprehended promptly.
The two leaders spoke on Friday during a girls’ empowerment programme dubbed Mama County Says organized by Dr. Osogo’s office.
The event held at Mirogi Boys High School brought together girls from various schools in all eight constituencies.
Wanga said the fight against teen pregnancies requires concerted efforts from all stakeholders in the county.
The Governor said she will not entertain anybody who violates the sexual rights of minors in the county.
She said girls should be given the requisite protection to enable them acquire education adding it was through education that many girls in the county will become leaders in future.
“Let us protect our girls from people who want to ruin their lives. As one of the current leaders, we are headed for retirement and the people who will take over from us are these girls. Ruining their lives today means we will not have future female leaders,” Wanga said.
She therefore advised girls to commit themselves to academics and avoid being lured into premature sex.
“I want our girls to stand firm against those who want to defile them. Let them focus on their books,” Wanga said.
Dr. Osogo said they are committed to ensuring girls who dropped out of school due to teen pregnancies were readmitted back to school. “We want every girl to acquire education. That is why we are supporting teen mothers to return to school,” Dr Osogo said.
The Registrar of the Judiciary Ms Anne Amadi who was also in attendance urged girls and boys in schools to work hard. “Let all our children embrace the spirit of hard work in academic programmes,” Amadi said.
Kisumu Woman rep Ruth Odinga who also graced the function urged girls to particularly embrace Mathematics, sciences and technical courses.
“We want to see girls who become engineers and architects. Let girls not fear mathematics,” Odinga said.
Similar sentiments were echoed by Machakos woman rep Joyce Kamene and Malindi MP Amina Mnyazi who were the guest speakers during the event.
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