Okada riders sensitised to gender-based violence, teenage pregnancy

About 50 commercial okada and tricycle riders in the Akatsi North District in the Volta Region have participated in a day’s seminar in Ave Dakpa on Sexual and Gender-Based Violence and teenage pregnancy which is on the rise in the district.

The seminar was organised under the auspices of National Youth Authority (NYA) in partnership with the Volta Regional Coordinating Council (VRCC).

The project is being funded by United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) on the theme: “Sustaining Reproductive Health Education through effective youth participation”.

Speaking at the event, Mrs Eyra Ekpe Dywill, Volta Regional Director of Gender, explained that the training seminar was one of the interventions being implemented by NYA and Department of Gender to safeguard the future of our teenagers.

She explained that the undesirable issue of teenage pregnancy in Akatsi North District is very high due to irresponsible attitude of our teenagers.

“As a district we cannot allow this attitude to endanger the future of our girls,” she said.

Mrs Dywill observed that lack of education and sensitisation had become  breeding grounds for gender biases, discrimination and teenage pregnancies among the youth.

She, therefore, called for continuous education on the laws on teenage pregnancy, sexual and gender- based violence to discourage the youth from indulging in those acts.

This,   according to her, would help minimise our teenage girls from getting pregnant at the prime of their age, adding “we need to ensure to uphold the tenets of irresponsible parenting to help our children especially our teenage girls.”

“Let’s provide them with the basics so that they are not lured by men to engage in sexual activities,” shed added.

She emphasised that rape and defilement cases were criminal offences which should not be settled out of court and urged parents of victims to report such cases to the police for intervention.

Mr Yao Semode, Volta Regional Director of National Youth Authority in his remarks called on all stakeholders to join the campaign to address issues of Reproductive Health Education.

He said although some gains had been made to reduce teenage pregnancy in the district, there were still some communities where teenage pregnancy remained high.

FROM KAFUI GATI, AVE DAKPA

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