• Only three percent of field health workers discuss contraception with 15-19-year-olds
• There are 465,000 abortions a year in Kenya but the population will still hit 90 million by 2050
Young men shun contraception because they perceive it as a female responsibility, according to a report released yesterday by Form Ni Gani (see P10).
Their Kenya 2030 report gave findings from focus groups with young men.
One key finding is that only three percent of field health workers discuss contraception with 15 to 19 year-olds.
As a result, they learn about contraception too late resulting in unwanted pregnancies and teenage abortions.
There are 465,000 abortions a year in Kenya. Effective family planning education could massively reduce this.
Women should be given proper access to family planning services but, just as important, men need to act responsibly. Men should ask women if they are taking precautions and, if they are not, they should use a condom or practice withdrawal.
Vasectomies are safe and nowadays reversible. That is an effective long-term solution available to men.
Kenya's population is predicted to exceed 90 million by 2050 and 160 million by 2100. This is not sustainable.
The government needs to reactivate the powerful family planning programmes of the 1970s and increase health education in schools. And this time men should step up and share responsibility for contraception with women.
Quote of the day: "Nobody's ambition is worth the blood of any Nigerian."
The Nigerian president was born on November 20, 1957