Mr Michael Tagoe, the Youth Programme Officer of the Planned Parenthood Association of Ghana (PPAG), for the Western and Central Regions, expressed worry that the misuse of contraceptives was high among the youth and could have dire consequences to their reproductive system.
He was addressing some members of faith-based youth groups at a capacity building workshop on “Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR),” at Twifo Hemang in the Central Region.
The workshop was organised by the National Youth Authority (NYA) in collaboration with the Regional Coordinating Council and the Domestic Violence and Victim Support Unit (DOVVSU) with funding from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).
Mr Tagoe said the youth must be educated on their reproductive sexuality and its related issues to equip them with knowledge, which would also help in reducing sexually transmitted infections.
“A lot of people have suffered some sexual challenges and infections because of some bad decisions,” he noted, adding that the youth experienced unintended pregnancies due to curiosity and lack of knowledge.
He advised the girls to stay off self-induced abortions because it was unsafe and criminal.
Corporal Richard Twum, the Sexual Offenses and Domestic Relations Investigator at DOVVSU, who educated participants on sexual offenses and related punishments, cautioned that perpetrators of rape, defilement, incest and indecent assault could face a number of jail terms.
He condemned parents who sidelined issues of sexuality and failed to expose perpetrators who were either friends, relations or acquaintances, thereby exposing their children to danger with the culprits walking free.
Mr Emmanuel Martey, the Regional Director of the NYA, said religious organisations were often reluctant to openly discuss sexuality or reproductive health issues on the basis of morality.
That, he said, kept majority of their youth in perpetual ignorance and called for more awareness to sensitise the youth on the subject.