About 50 percent of the girls subjected to early pregnancies

A picture of the representative of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Dr. Ademola Olajide (File photo)

By Ephraim Modi D.S

The State of the world population report projects South Sudan in the world with 50 percent of the girls in the country being in a theme of an initial confinement.

South Sudan is ranked among the top ten African countries with highest prevalence of adolescent pregnancies.

A representative from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), Dr. Ademola Olajide made the statement on Tuesday during the celebration of the World Population Day and the launch of the State of the World Population report in Juba.

“For us in South Sudan, about 50% of the girls get married before they are 18 years old. They are mothers while they are still teenagers,” he stressed.

Mr. Olajide also observed in the report that some women globally are victims of such circumstances.

“25% of women globally do not have the capacity to say no to sex when they don’t want it, and are unable to take decision that relate to their own health,” he added.

The UNFPA Country representative said as the world journeys towards 8 billion, population is leaving the rights and choices of women and girls behind.

The leading causes of unintended pregnancies in South Sudan and globally are non-use and also improper use of contraceptive services and failure, social pressures and expectations overshadowed the needs of women and so it becomes hard for the women to prevent pregnancy.

“50% of pregnancies globally are unintended which amounts to 121millions pregnancies, 250 million women who are sexually active, do not want pregnancy and they are not using any form of modern contraceptives,” said Olajide.

Mr. Olajide appealed to the communities to make efforts in ensuring that the challenge is addressed duly.

Report from the South Sudan Medical Journal echoed that contributory factors for early pregnancies in the country are sociocultural where the need for dowries, forced and arranged marriages, gender-based violence are examples, economic and political factors; where poor implementation of adolescent policies, illiteracy and poverty are major factors.

In addition, they said that all rape and sexual slavery are reported as causes of adolescent pregnancies.

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