– Three persons arrested for teenage pregnancy cases in Ofoase-Ayirebi
– 64-year-old man accused of impregnating his 14-year-old stepdaughter
– Two teenagers locked and defiled two siblings aged 12 and 15, resulting in pregnancy
– Police operation facilitated by Ark Development Organization’s intervention funded by UNICEF
– Lack of resources and logistics for DOVVSU hindering their efforts to address the issue
– Over 150 teenage mothers identified, with many men denying responsibility
– Residents support the arrest of men involved in teenage pregnancies
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Three individuals have been apprehended by the Oda Divisional Police Command in connection with the increasing number of teenage pregnancy cases in Ofoase-Ayirebi, Eastern Region. The suspects include a 64-year-old man accused of impregnating his 14-year-old stepdaughter, as well as two teenagers who locked and defiled two siblings aged 12 and 15, resulting in pregnancy. These arrests were made possible through the collaborative efforts of the police and Ark Development Organization, a not-for-profit organization implementing the UNICEF-funded intervention known as “Safe and Protective Environment for Adolescent Development (SPREAD).”
Incidents of Teenage Pregnancy in Ofoase-Ayirebi
One of the suspects, a 64-year-old man, allegedly engaged in multiple sexual encounters with his 14-year-old stepdaughter whenever his wife was away from home. This young victim, a final year Junior High School pupil preparing for the Basic Education Certificate Examination, recently gave birth. The other two suspects, both teenagers themselves, locked two siblings aged 12 and 15 in a room and subjected them to sexual assault, resulting in the older sibling becoming pregnant.
Addressing the Alarming Trend
In response to the high rates of teenage pregnancy in the district, Ark Development Organization has been implementing the SPREAD intervention funded by UNICEF. However, the lack of resources and logistics for the Domestic Violence and Victims Support Unit (DOVVSU) at Ofoase District Police Command has severely limited their ability to address the issue effectively. This concerning situation has left the Executive Director of Ark Development Organization, Emmanuel Kwarfo Mintah, worried about the continued prevalence of sexual and gender-based violence in Ofoase-Ayirebi. Mr. Mintah emphasizes the urgent need for government support and resources to empower DOVVSU to combat these issues more effectively.
Consequences of Teenage Pregnancy
According to David Kwaning, the Project Officer, out of the 153 teenage mothers identified in 2022, many struggled to identify the fathers of their children, as men denied responsibility. This troubling situation raises concerns about the well-being of these children, who will grow up without knowing their fathers and without the support they deserve.
Support from Residents
The arrests of men involved in teenage pregnancies in Ofoase-Ayirebi have garnered support from residents. Acknowledging the harmful impact of such actions, the community hopes that these arrests will serve as a deterrent against such behavior. One parent lamented the activities of motorcycle taxi riders, commonly known as “okada riders,” who have been particularly involved in impregnating young girls.
The recent arrests related to teenage pregnancies in Ofoase-Ayirebi shed light on the urgent need for action to address this alarming trend. While the assistance provided by Ark Development Organization is commendable, the lack of resources and logistics for DOVVSU hampers their ability to effectively tackle the issue. It is crucial for the government to allocate the necessary resources and support to DOVVSU, enabling them to ensure the safety and well-being of adolescents in the district. Only through a concerted effort can we combat the pervasive issue of teenage pregnancy and protect the rights of these vulnerable individuals.