By Peter Abanabasazi
Although children aren’t considered most at risk of contracting Covid-19, they are among the most vulnerable to the ‘secondary’ social and economic impacts, child rights activists have reveaed.
These impacts could affect children for the rest of their lives.
In Uganda the Government acted quickly to put in place ‘lockdown’ measures to mitigate the spread of the outbreak. These have had commendable impact, but they also exacerbate other risks to children which need to be addressed.
Now, Child Rights activists in Bunyoro region are calling upon leaders and parents to continue protecting children against violence and sexual abuse, child labour and child marriage.
Catherine Kamanyire Kobusinge, the Executive Director for Hoima Network of Child Rights Club (HONECRIC) has expressed concern over the increasing reports of teenage pregnancies in Bunyoro region adding that such reports are indictors that children are not protected.
She notes that the effects of Covid-19 might cripple the rights of the girl child further as long as the lockdown remains active with schools closed.
According to her, the recent reports from health facilities in Hoima indicate that more than 600 girls have been impregnated in the first six months of this year.
She notes that such negative development calls for emergence response from all caring stakeholders.
Recently, in Masindi district, Child Rights Empowerment and Development Organization (CEDO) reported that more than 1,750 girls were impregnated in one year from June 2020-June 2021 during the lockdown period.