In Tanzania, no teen mother is allowed back to school, although human rights groups make pressure over the government about the issue. President Magufuli denied, arguing that permitting teen mothers to resume studies, would encourage others for sex.
According to The East African, Magufuli said “There are many things that the girls can do after delivery; they can join VETA (Vocational Education Training Authority centres) and learn sewing and farming.” “After getting pregnant, you are done!” the president said, while addressing residents of Bagamoyo during a three-day tour of the Coast region.
About the man responsible for the pregnancy however, Magufuli said he should be imprisoned for 30 years and put the energy he used to impregnate the girl into farming while in prison, but girls will never be allowed back to school after giving birth during Magufuli’s administration.
“If we were to allow the girls back to school, one day we would find all girls in Standard One going home to nurse their babies,” The President said.
Human rights groups pressure
Pressure for the government to allow teen mothers be readmitted in schools has been mounting, with rights groups calling for the formulation of legal framework that would allow schoolgirls resume studies after giving birth.
Magufuli accused them of being used by foreign agents. It’s ignorant and foolish,” he said adding that they are” introducing behaviours that even cows and goats cannot condone.”
Civil society organisations have been urging the government to permit teen mothers to re-enter the education system, and a parliamentary committee as well as Opposition MPs have joined in the calls.
A report by Human Rights Watch says about 8,000 girls who drop out of school every year due to pregnancy.
However, President Magufuli said the foreign human rights groups should open schools for the teen mothers instead of trying to force the government’s hand.
He also condemned the activists for advocating for same sex relationships calling on Tanzanians to be watchful.
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Jean Baptiste Karegeya
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