12yr olds using contraceptives is a joke: Masarira

12yr olds using contraceptives is a joke: Masarira
12yr olds using contraceptives is a joke: Masarira

Labor Economists Afrikan Democrats (LEAD) leader Linda Masarira says the idea of allowing girls as young as 12 years to take contraceptives is not only unheard of but is also a big joke.

Masarira’s sentiments come at a time when the government has rejected moves by the Advocacy Core Team (ACT) to relax the condition of accessing sexual reproductive health services by adolescences.

ACT added that young girls are falling pregnant or having unsafe abortions because they are prevented from accessing contraceptives.

The organisations say this causes girls to either die or drop out of school and lose life opportunities.

However, in an interview, Masarira said the move is a joke as even adults are failing to use condoms even though they have access.

She added that at 12 years, the girls will still be children according to the constitution.

“12-year-olds using contraceptives is a joke and unheard of. Adults are failing to use condoms and at what point do we sit comfortably and say 12-year-olds sleeping together will use condoms?

“Adults themselves who know that they are supposed to use condoms to avert sexually transmitted diseases or unwanted pregnancies do not even use it. What more a 12-year-old.

“So, trying to say a girl child at the age of 12 should be engaging in sex and should have access to sexual reproductive health is a non-starter.

Anyone under 18 years is a child

“Our constitution is clear that anyone under the age of 18 is a minor. As long as one is a minor they have to go and access the sexual reproductive health with a parent.

“Why do we want to cause de-parenting of children in our country? That does not make sense because what is going to happen is our children are going to end up being sex objects and abused.

“An old man can just take my child and give her contraceptives and sleep with her without my knowledge and that is the reality. We must look at the pitfalls and downfalls of making children go and access sexual reproductive health services without the knowledge of a parent.

‘’Children should be allowed to be children. Those who have started engaging in sexual activities can go to their mothers and they can then take them to the sexual reproductive health and ensure that what needs to be done is done.

“Yes, there’s been an argument that there are child-headed families and that’s the obligation of the state to ensure that all the children without sufficient parental care are given proper family structures.

“But has the CSOs pushed the government that all these children headed families are rehabilitated? No. We are rushing to try and put lipstick on a pig to appease their funders. We will not allow such nonsense in this country and I’m clear about that,’’ she said.

12yr olds using contraceptives is a joke: Masarira

12yr olds using contraceptives is a joke: Masarira