Nana Addo Mensah, chief of Konkonuru near Aburi, has appealed to government to institute strong communal punishment for men who impregnate teenagers, to deter others.
He observed that, teenage pregnancies are becoming rampant, and therefore stressed the need to institute punishments that would deter people from indulging in such acts, to protect young school-going girls.
The chief also called on parents to strengthen their oversight roles and responsibilities over their children, particularly the girl-child.
He said, by providing their needs, the girls would be prevented from falling into relationships that would result in teenage pregnancies.
Nana Mensah was speaking at an adolescent durbar held at Konkonuru by the Public Health Nurses Group (PHNG) in the Eastern Region, on the theme: ‘Preventing Pregnancies and
Pregnancy-related Deaths among Adolescents, The Role of the Public Health Nurse.’
He appealed to the Ghana Health Service (GHS) to upgrade the health centre in the community to a hospital status, to serve the other surrounding communities with accessible and quality healthcare.
Mrs. Margaret Adufu, Eastern Regional Chairman of the PHNG, said teenage pregnancy had risen by 13 percent over the past four years in the region, and attempted abortion had led to deaths.
She said, it must be a source of concern for all, since abortion-related deaths are the third cause of maternal deaths among pregnant teens nationwide.
Mrs Adufu indicated that, Africa has the highest rate of abortion-related deaths, and that the World Health Organization(WHO)estimates that 4.2 million unsafe abortions take place in Africa and approximately 47,000 women die from unsafe abortion every year and 90 women die everyday.
She appealed to parents to break the silence and talk about sex education to their children in the homes, to prevent them from falling prey to peer pressures.
She stressed the need for young women to have access to modern contraceptive methods.
She urged students to abstain from sex and take their education seriously, since any sex act could lead to teenage pregnancy that would jeopardize their future. GNA