Bolgatanga, Oct. 18, GNA - Statistics from the Upper East Regional Birth and Deaths office, indicates that 3,404 teenagers ranging from the ages of 10 and 19 became pregnant between 2003 and 2004. Speaking to the Ghana News Agency, the Regional Director, Mr Jojo Dolphine attributed the problem to forceful marriages, irresponsible parenthood, peer pressure and the influence of foreign cultures. The Regional Director expressed regret that as a result many girls are dropping out f school.
Mr Dolphine said the teenagers often encountered health complications during delivery.
He said one of the major challenges facing the teenage mothers were that most of them could not identify those who made them pregnant. Mr Dolphine urged parents to be more responsible towards the upkeep of their children, by providing them with their basic needs, council them against peer and other negative pressures and monitor their activities to keep them on the right track. He asked the National Media Commission to ban foreign films that had negative impact on the country's cultural values. Mr Dolphine called on school authorities to establish and reinforced counselling units to insulate the youth against premarital sex and other deviant behaviour.