Counsellors, teachers and health experts fear that as parents keep a distance between them and their children, social media, fantasy novels and technology gets them hooked on pornographic content, and as such, many young girls and boys have fallen prey to the fulfilment of sexual fantasies.
Many Ugandan adolescents are
drifting into pornography, as a result of limited publicity about age
appropriate information at health facilities and schools and an increase in
Counsellors, teachers and health
experts fear that as parents keep a distance between them and their children,
social media, fantasy novels and technology gets them hooked on pornographic content,
and as such, many young girls and boys have fallen prey to the fulfilment of sexual
The experts who were attending an
adolescent health symposium in Kampala this morning expressed worry that not
enough is being done to restrict what should or shouldn’t be accessed
especially on the internet.
Susan Ajok from the Straight Talk
Foundation said this should be blamed on limited adult involvement in the
growth of their children.
//Cue in; “We know that...
Cue out…. kind of information.”
She said that in order to be able
to guide adolescents through this stage where they can’t easily make
an appropriate judgement on what’s good or not for them, parents need to first
understand what their roles can be even if they are largely absent.
//Cue in; Parents must be…
Cue out…Is compromised.” //
Dr Sabrina Kitaka, a Senior Pediatrician who runs the adolescent health clinic in Mulago hospital said that
they opted to find parents in their own spaces after realizing that parent
involvement in adolescent growth was too low. She says that initially when they
resolved to conduct a workshop for parents, only six showed up.
Dr Kitaka noted that 52 per cent
of the over 40 million Ugandans are below 15 years of age which makes it key to
have programmes that help them access properly sieved information. She gave an
example of adolescents who live with HIV who face high levels of stigma and
many of them find problems disclosing to their partners.
“At Baylor, we are seeing
children born with HIV growing. In fact, our oldest is 34-years now but you
know we need to continue talking to them giving them information because they
will now want to marry”, she said, adding that they are establishing that while
adolescent boys living with the virus are freely disclosing their status to
their girlfriends, the girls are not.
For her, the only way
through which girls can access age-appropriate information is through NGOs and
peer education because generally, especially on the internet and in schools,
there’s a lot of information especially now with the absence of a framework to
guide what should or shouldn’t be accessed at different levels.