- According to information recently released, 1 000 teen girls fell pregnant in Ekurhuleni during 2017
- One of the pregnant girls is in grade 5 - between 11 or 12 years old
- Teenage pregnancies are a real problem in South Africa that needs urgent attention from communities and the government
Information revealed that in Ekurhuleni alone, 1 000 teenage girls have been reported pregnant last year.
One of these girls was a grade 5 student - meaning a 11 or 12 year old girl is expecting her first child.
At 11 or 12, a girl is barely mature enough to take care of herself, how is she to take care of another human being?
The Democratic Alliance finds this information alarming.
The general feeling of the DA is that young girls under the age of 16 are being taken advantage of - a reason behind the shocking number of them falling pregnant.
According to a report by The Sowetan, the Ekurhuleni mayor, Mzwandile Masina, stated that one of the main reasons young girls are falling pregnant is "the cult of blessers".
A "blesser" is basically a sugar daddy, but maybe not more than 10 years older than the girl he "blesses" with gifts and money.
Briefly.co.za learned that between 2014 and 2016, more than 42 000 girls under 19 fell pregnant. 193 of these girls were in grade 3 - 5.
When these girls fall pregnant, majority of them do not return to school. The girls will then struggle to provide for their child and build a future for herself.
Clearly our communities need to be more involved in the lives of their youth - especially young and impressionable girls.
On social media a Twitter user asked followers how to solve the teenage pregnancy problem in South Africa:
One user stated that birth control should be compulsory.
Another user felt that the youth are just ignoring all the good advice they are given:
Unless this matter is taken on in a direct and drastic manner, it will only get worse. This is not something that will simply go away.
The reaction of local South Africans bespeak a genuine concern for the young girls who fall pregnant:
Zola Madlala from KwaNyuswa - This is a shock and disgrace. How can a 14-year-old be a mother because she still needs care from her parents. A 14 year old is a child and should be in school instead of taking care of a baby.
Makhosi Dlungwane from KwaNyuswa - I think the government should hire people to deal with these matters. They should do research and meet the family. There might be a solid explanation for this. They might discover that the girl was raped. These things happen and family members turn a blind eye to it.
Nomfundo Gwala from Clermont - This is shocking. These girls are now mothers at a very young age and they will lose out on school and their youth. Children should bear in mind that there are things like sexually transmitted diseases. But then again some of these girls want to experiment at a young age. I feel sorry for them.”
Kupe Warona - This is happening to too many girls - now even boys are getting raped. Go thata. I can just imagine how angry these kids are going to be when they grow up - the boys and the girls. And if you have a child and they weren't abused, they are very likely to end up with someone who was abused. If it didn't affect your child, your grandchild likely will have a parent who was affected.
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