Parents within slum areas in Trans Nzoia County have been cited as contributing factors towards a recent upsurge in cases of teenage pregnancies among girls in primary and secondary schools in the region.
The said parents are said to be exposing their young girls to conditions that lead to indulgence in sexual activities that result in pregnancy cases with most of them engaging in the sale of illicit brew that brings them in contact with men.
“Some of the parents have developed a habit of sending their young girls on errands like hawking that see them operate up to late night hours where they are enticed by men who give them money,” said the region’s National Parents Association chairman Wellington Waliaula.
At St. Emmanuel mixed secondary school within Folk land slum, about 30 girls are pregnant with teachers saying efforts to have the culprits behind their status brought have not yielded since parents are compromised with money.
“We have been faced with a challenge as a school in assisting the girls seek justice since most of the parents resort to having the cases solved away from the courts of law where they are compensated with money,” said Mrs. Grace Masire, the school deputy.
The school principal Mr. Cornelius Mukhwana said the vice has greatly affected the performance of the girls at school since most of them have to cope with absenteeism while receiving prenatal or postnatal healthcare.
The county government’s reproductive health coordinator Betty Khaemba who is overseeing a sensitization exercise to enlighten the girls on how to avoid the trap of early pregnancy called for tougher legal measures to curb the vice.
“Perpetrators of this vice must be brought to book and be charged according to the sexual offences act since most of these girls are left on their own as the culprits chase the next prey,” said Mrs Khaemba who said the teen pregnancy rate in the county is at 49%.