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Over 17,000 teenagers impregnated in Kakamega in 2019

Some 17,580 teenage girls were impregnated in Kakamega County in 2019 alone.

Rose Muhanda, who is in charge of the county Gender Based Violence Centre, says 561 were aged between 10 and 14 while 17,019 were 15 to 19 years.

Muhanda was addressing the County Area Advisory Council (CAAC) meeting on children affairs at the County Commissioner’s boardroom on Thursday.

She stated that Malava was the worst-hit of the 12 Sub Counties with 1,953 cases followed by Butere which had 1,872 then Shinyalu with 1,731 while the least affected was Khwisero with 621 cases.

The County Coordinator of Children Services Richard Masika said the teenagers are lured into early sex because of lack of role models in the society.

Young generation

“The general moral rot in the communities where adults do not care about their actions in front of children has messed up the young generation,” he said adding that in the traditional setting where adults would guide and direct the young was no longer practised.

The County Chief Education Officer (CCEO) David Kasembeli said that more 90 percent of the pregnancies among school girls happen outside the school environment.

“The teenagers are usually impregnated during holidays for borders while for the day scholars when they are outside the school compounds,” he said.

He said they intend to strictly enforce the reporting and departure time for day scholars since it has been argued that the girls leave so early for school and return at dusk making them vulnerable to the sex pests.

The stipulated reporting time is 7.30 am and departure is 4.30 pm but in most instances, it is 5.30am and 6.30pm respectively.

The research conducted by the African Medical and Research Foundation (AMREF) in the county last year indicated that the early pregnancies in the county are attributable to poverty, poor parenting and corruption that impedes access to justice.