Government to Ban Pornography? The country’s youth argued.
A group of Central Region teenagers has called on the government to outlaw pornography as a way to reduce teen pregnancies in the country.
They claim that the country’s youth have been over-exposed to pornography, which has influenced them to participate in dangerous behaviors, including teenage pregnancy.
The teenagers were attending an intergenerational meeting in which 150 adolescents from all of the Central Districts met with Members of Parliament (MPs) to discuss the country’s high rate of adolescent pregnancy.
Government to Ban Pornography?
The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) hosted the conference as part of a three-day solution-based dialogue between the Parliamentary Caucus on Population and Development, the Young Parliamentarians Forum, and adolescents in the Central Region on how to effectively address the issue of teenage pregnancy in the country.
The teens argued that enacting rules restricting access to pornography would minimize adolescent exposure and redirect their attention to more beneficial endeavors.
Broken households, social media influence, longing for material things, dealing with the issues of menstruation, and poor parenting, according to them, are other factors of adolescent pregnancy.
The youth also called for a policy that would make sanitary pads more inexpensive and available to teenage girls, particularly in rural areas, in order to avoid the scenario where girls rely on financial assistance from men and boys to purchase sanitary pads every month.
Mrs. Patricia Appiagyei, MP for Asokwa, said in a statement to launch the conference that the debates will disclose the true causes behind the figures, allowing lawmakers to define their role in finding a solution to adolescent pregnancy in the country.
She stated that, while there were signs that adolescent pregnancy was on the decline in the Central Region as a result of a variety of programs, the rate of reduction was sluggish, necessitating legislation.
Mr. Niyi Ojuolape, the UNFPA Representative, said in a statement issued on his behalf that the UN agency was executing a collaborative initiative with Canada to empower adolescent girls in Ghana by improving access to gender-responsive sexuality education and quality sexual and reproductive health care.
“A key pillar of this initiative is to engage policymakers at all levels to advocate for and enable a paradigm change in favor of investing in teenage girls,” he added.
Mr. Ojuolape spoke on the topic of adolescent pregnancy, saying, “the numbers given by the Ghana Health Service, even if it is dropping with time, is still concerning.” When we have a legislation that states having intercourse with a girl under sixteen years of age is defilement, having over 2,800 females between the ages of 10 and 14 get pregnant in 2020 is concerning because it is definitely an instance of sexual and gender based abuse.”
“We are concerned because we are aware that all adolescent pregnancies are unwanted.” Mr Ojuolape remarked that “majority may end in dangerous child deliveries, and these young people’s goals would not be realized.”
UNFPA’s objective, he emphasized, is to create a world where every pregnancy is desired, every delivery is safe, and every young person’s potential is realized.
Mr. Ojuolape stated that if Ghana is to truly spin the wheels of economic development, it must participate and contribute to the harnessing of the demographic dividend through investing in young people, one of which is to find a true solution to adolescent pregnancy.
He stated that UNFPA views Members of Parliament as “agents of change” who have the social and moral capital to advance the agenda of the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) in Ghana, which includes issues affecting adolescent girls, thus the conference to find a solution to teenage pregnancy.