Monday, September 5, 2016

RC orders pregnancy tests for students

Mtwara Regional Commissioner Halima Dendego

Mtwara Regional Commissioner Halima Dendego 

By Haika Kimaro @TheCitizenTz

Mtwara. Mtwara Regional Commissioner Halima Dendego has directed that all schoolgirls in the region be regularly tested for pregnancy.
Ms Dendego issued the directive on Saturday when receiving 45 desks donated by Tanzania Postal Bank (TPB) to Mtwara Technical Secondary School.
She said subjecting schoolgirls to regular pregnancy tests would discourage them from being distracted from their studies.
The RC added that the directive was aimed at ensuring that schoolgirls completed their studies without having to drop out.
“I don’t want to hear about schoolgirl pregnancies in this region again.  Schoolgirls should be left to concentrate on their studies, and that’s why I’m calling for regular pregnancy tests in schools.
“I’m directing all head teachers to include pregnancy tests in their calendars from today on wards.  Our girls have been left to their own devices.  They are too free, and this is dangerous. We should see to it that they are fully aware of the consequences of fooling around instead of concentrating on their studies,” Ms Dendego said.
She accused “old” men of misleading young girls and luring them into “destructive” relationships.
“Men are luring girls who are young enough to be their daughters and the result is unwanted pregnancies or HIV infection or both.”
Mtwara is among regions with the highest incidence of schoolgirl pregnancies in the country, according to official statistics.
Speaking during the event, TPB Managing Director Sabasaba Moshingi said the donation of desks was in keeping up with the lender’s policy of ploughing back to society part of its profits.
“TPB has been sharing its profits with society, and we have decided to go out of our way this year to ensure that we play a key role in improving learning environments in various parts of the country.”
Mr Moshingi said the bank was also involved in putting up two classrooms and a staff room at Makambako Primary School in Njombe District.
He urged Tanzanians to support TPB’s corporate social responsibility initiative by using services available at the lender’s 60 branches and sub-branches countrywide.
Earlier, Mtwara Technical Secondary School head teacher Paul Kaji highlighted various challenges the institute was grappling with.
“Inadequate accommodation is one of the problems. We have a total of 812 students in Form One to Six, out of whom  592 are boys and 217 girls, but the available accommodation is inadequate,” he said in his report.
Mtwara Region is among a handful of regions that have surplus desks.
The region currently has 35,228 desks, which is 121.7 per cent of needs. There are 5,390 surplus desks in secondary schools and 500 in primary schools.