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Zombo District Struggles to Return Teenage Mothers to School :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Zombo District Struggles to Return Teenage Mothers to School

According to information obtained from the district education department, the most affected schools are those located along the Uganda-DR Congo border where over 30 girls reportedly fled to DRC after conceiving over the past year.
Nicholas Odeba, Zombo district Education Officer (File Photo)

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Authorities in Zombo District are struggling to return teenage mothers to school as many of them flee into hiding.

According to information obtained from the district education department, the most affected schools are those located along the Uganda-DR Congo border where over 30 girls reportedly fled to DRC after conceiving over the past year.

Currently, the primary school completion rate for boys stands at 47 per cent and only 27 per cent for girls, with an overall completion rate of 37 per cent for both genders.

Zombo district Education Officer Nicholas Odebaacknowledged that most girls who get pregnant while in school elope to their relatives in the neighbouring DR Congo frustrating their efforts to follow up and return them to class. He says they are considering a cross-border border ordinance to stem out the vice.

//Cue in; “In one of...

Cue out...a foreign country.”//

Cosmas Omirambe, a sexual and reproductive health rights activist in the district attributed the dropout, especially of the girl child to poor parenting. Omirambe appealed to parents to be keen on the upbringing of their children.

//Cue in; “If you are...

Cue out...for the child.”//

Zombo district is one of the areas in the West Nile region where teenage pregnancy cases are rampant.  Between 2020-2021, Zombo district recorded over 9,000 cases of teenage pregnancies according to data from the district community services department.

The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) report on teenage pregnancy in 2021 indicates that West Nile is among the top six regions with the highest numbers of teenage pregnancies, with the most affected districts being Arua Yumbe and Zombo. 

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