Döbra School Girls On Family Planning

MORE than five pupils – aged between 12 and 15 years – at St Joseph’s Doumlbra High School just outside Windhoek are on family planning.

Doumlbra school head Elfriede Masule confirmed this yesterday, saying the girls were put on family planning by their parents.

Masule said they also learned with shock about the girls’ use of contraceptives, and about the case of a Grade 8 pupil at the school who is pregnant.

According to Masule, the family planning issue came up during a life skills discussion.

The school head said the teenage pregnancy rate at the school was not high apart from last year’s one case and the current one.

“For the first time, we had a Grade nine pupil who fell pregnant last year and this one in Grade eight,” Masule said, adding that they had a parents’ meeting on Saturday where the issue was brought up.

“This is, of course, a sensitive topic and some parents explained why they have put their young children on contraceptives. Some say they know that their children are sexually active and others say they did it because their children stay in the hostel,” she said.

Masule also said she is trying to talk to parents about the after-effects of family planning for girls as young as 12 years.

A Windhoek-based gynaecologist, Dr John Keiseb, however told The Namibian that there is nothing wrong with a 12-year-old girl being put on contraceptives.

“As long as the girl knows about it and the mother is present or has given consent, there is nothing wrong. There are unfounded allegations about long-term effects like sterility. Well, if that was the case, then this medication would not have remained on the market until now. If the mother knows her child is sexually active, all she needs to do is talk to the child. If both agree, a doctor cannot refuse to put the child on family planning,” Keiseb said.

He further said whether you put a 12-year-old or a 40-year-old on family planning, the side effects are the same, and that sterility is a myth.

Source : The Namibian