Grace Pamela Adong, the Bundibugyo District Probation Officer, says a number of girls aged between 13 and 18 years might not return to school because they are either married, breastfeeding or still be pregnant.
Bundibugyo district authorities are concerned
that many young girls may not return to school because of pregnancies and early
This stems from data compiled by the district indicating that more
than 200 girls had been impregnated since government halted studies in
March 2020 due to the COVID19 pandemic.
Grace Pamela Adong, the Bundibugyo District Probation Officer, says a number of
girls aged between 13 and 18 years might not return to school because they are
either married, breastfeeding or still be pregnant.
He says although the
statistics compiled by the Criminal Investigations Department shows that about 200
have been impregnated in the past five months, her office is aware that the
figure is much higher since most cases go unreported because some parents
conceal the information.
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She attributes the high number of teenage pregnancies to the
prolonged lockdown and high poverty levels in households. She says that they
have embarked on a door to door sensitization campaign to encourage girls who
have given birth and in early stages of their pregnancy to return to school.
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The district is also encouraging those who feel out of place to retain to school
to take on vocational studies.
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Muhamad Masereka, the Deputy Head Teacher Green Circle Primary School
in Harugale Sub County expects fewer girls to return to school. He says schools
occupy learners and keep them away from all manner of temptations.
says the 6-month’s lockdown exposed them to all kind of ill behaviour.
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Anthony Balyebulya, the headteacher Bubukwanga Secondary School wants
government to prioritize the issue of young girls who could be pregnant or
married. He attributes the problem to the hard economic times several
parties are going through, which has prompted some of them to give away their
daughters in marriage.
Justus Bithaghalise, the Bundibugyo District Education Officer argues
that although the government policy allows expectant learners to return to
school, some might have low esteem to meet their peers. He, however, says they
will try their best to ensure all learners return to class through awareness