• Wed. Jun 19th, 2024

Pupils urged to avoid unwanted pregnancies and HIV/AIDS


May 31, 2024

BUJUMBURA, May 30th (ABP) – On Tuesday 28 May 2024, the Office of the First Lady for Development in Burundi (OPDD-Burundi) continued its awareness-raising campaign for young schoolchildren on sexual and reproductive health, HIV/AIDS and nutrition for the 2023-2024 school year, targeting pupils at the Lycée Cibitoke and the Karurama I and II primary schools.

In his speech, OPDD-Burundi Executive Secretary Dr Thaddée Ndikumana, who was the bearer of a message from First Lady Angeline Ndayishimiye, first delivered a message of greetings from the First Lady.

He then told the pupils from the three schools that the country wants every child of school age to be at school and to finish their studies, because young people are the Burundi of tomorrow. “Young people will be the country’s future leaders”, he added. To achieve that objective, pupils must avoid any behaviour that might distract them from their future.

Dr. Ndikumana stressed the need to avoid sexual intercourse, explaining that the time to have sex has not yet come. According to him, it is by engaging in sexual vagrancy (ubusambanyi) that young girls become pregnant, and those unwanted pregnancies lead them to interrupt or drop out of school.

For the same reason, young people can catch HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases. Young people also need to cut down on alcohol consumption, particularly excessive alcoholic beverages, which are currently damaging the health of young people and even adult consumers. He gave the example of drinks known as Sapor, Kicke, Bangala and others.

                                                                             Pupils from Lycée Cibitoke and Karurama I, II basic schools

The Executive Secretary of OPDD-Burundi also asked the students to avoid taking drugs. They are also called upon to use the new information and communication technologies rationally, instead of using them to watch pornographic and other films that abuse them.

In closing, he urged the pupils to follow the advice given by their parents and teachers at the school.

Pupils from the three schools had the opportunity to listen to presentations on three themes: sexual and reproductive health, good nutritional practices and the fight against HIV/AIDS.

On the topic of sexual and reproductive health, the presenter told them that girls over the age of 10 can become pregnant, which is why they should avoid buddying up and having sex at an early age. All young people should avoid masturbating because it can lead to infertility in the future.

As for the presenter on the theme of the fight against HIV/AIDS, he pointed out that there are young people living with HIV/AIDS. He also pointed out the three ways of catching the virus. Unprotected sexual intercourse, the use of sharp objects by a person living with HIV can lead to contamination, as can contamination from mother to child. For that reason, he invited young people to go for screening to find out about their state of health.

On the subject of good nutritional practices, the presenter stressed the importance of adopting a balanced diet consisting of proteins, carbohydrates and lipids.

For their part, the pupils from Cibitoke High School and Karurama I, II Basic Schools praised the teaching and advice they had just received. They expressed their thanks to the First Lady of the Republic of Burundi for thinking of them. On that occasion, they promised to change their behaviour and mentality in order to prepare well for their future.