His Royal Majesty Philip Olarker Rauni III and the Chief Guest His Excellency Yoweri Kaguta Museveni
By Prisca Oroma
During the Covid 19 lock down, there was a sharp increase in the number of teenage pregnancies across greater Nebbi.
This promoted Alur Kingdom to partner with civil society organizations to fight the vice through culture and sensitization of the communities.
Speaking during his 12th coronation anniversary, His Royal Majesty Philip Olarker Rauni III said that the theme of the celebration has again featured due to the fact that the vice has continued and a lot of effort is still needed to fight it.
The anniversary was celebrated under the theme “Ending child marriage and teenage pregnancies in Alur Kingdom”
The King said that currently the kingdom is partnering with Plan International, Actionaid, Memprow and UNFPA among others to sensitize the communities on impacts of teenage pregnancy and child Marriage.
“The partners have helped us train the spouses of chiefs who have become ambassadors in their chiefdom and they are helping young girls appreciate education” he said
He noted that the kingdom has introduced marriage certificate in a bid to fight early marriage and the chiefs have been advised to take this seriously and not to officiate any marriage where the bride or groom is underage.
He encouraged parents to give their children a second chance and allow them go back to school after delivery.
“these girls got pregnant while in school, since the government has allowed them to study while pregnant, parents should not deny them this opportunity” he added.
Meanwhile the president His Excellency Yowei Kaguta Museveni promised that all the girls who got pregnant during the lockdown complete their studies.
The president who was the chief guest at the 12th coronation anniversary at Atyak seed secondary school commended the kingdom for spearheading the campaign against teenage pregnancy and early child marriage.
“parliament has already passed a law that prohibits girls under 18 to be married off or have intimate relationship with the opposite sex because this is considered as defilement” he said.
He added that as the Kingdom is using culture to feel the gap, the government will use legislation and together they can sensitize the people to change the old customs.