• Four counties Kilifi, Siaya and Taita and Taita Taveta have reduced the number of teenage pregnancies by more than 50 per cent during the same period because of the focused collaboration in the counties.
• Coordination and close collaboration with involved institutions will help to address important issues in society.
Kenyans have been called upon to avoid cultural practices that promote the Triple threat which hinders the dreams of young girls.
The triple threat includes teenage pregnancy, new HIV infections and gender-based violence.
Cabinet Secretary Ministry of Interior Fred Matiang’i said that cultural practices that happen in communities violate the rights of young girls.
“The society practices these rituals and events to prey on young adolescent girls in the name of exchanging cows and other activities. This practice denies girls their future,” Matiang’i said.
He was speaking at the National Dialogue with Regional and County Commissioners on Thursday in Mombasa.
Matiang'i added that better coordination and close collaboration with involved institutions will help to address important issues in society.
The Principal Secretary Ministry of Health (MOH) Susan Mochache said that the Triple Threat is a silent pandemic affecting young people and needs to be dealt with in haste because the future generation depends on our actions.
She said that the MOH recorded a reduction in teenage pregnancies by 26 per cent in the last three years.
“In 2018 there were 427,000 teenage pregnancies reported at antenatal clinics but in 2021 we have recorded a reduced number, although still high at 317,000,” she said.
She noted that four counties Kilifi, Siaya and Taita Taveta have reduced the number of teenage pregnancies by more than 50 per cent during the same period because of the focused collaboration in the counties.
She said MOH partnered with other institutions in an effort to end HIV and Aids as a public threat.
Mochache said that between 2013 and 2021 through the HIV programme the annual HIV and AIDs related deaths declined by 67 per cent.
“This encouraging performance reflects an increase of 83 per cent in the number of people living with HIV that are on life-saving and antiretroviral treatment. From 600, 000 in 2013, we now have 1.2 million people living on ARVS,’’ she said.
She said that weekly infected adolescent girls in 2015, between ages 10 to 19, recorded 343. The cases reduced in 2021 to about 98 cases per week.
The PS said that GBV cases are still a major concern in the ministry and efforts have gone a long way to stem the vice to make the country a better place for girls and women.
Mochache said that between the month of January and February 2022, the country recorded 45,700 pregnant adolescents between the age of 10 and 19 and 2,019 cases of SGBV between the age of 12 and 17.
“In 2021 we recorded 12,250 cases of Gender-Based Violence and we were able to provide HIV prevention services to 4,600 girls but unfortunately, 53 girls contracted HIV,” she said.
She added that 21 per cent of pregnancies in antenatal care were adolescent girls.