Basic Education Minister, Angie Motshekga says teenage pregnancy has become a national crisis in South Africa.

The Gauteng Department of Health recently released a statement saying 23 000 girls under the age of 18 gave birth between April 2020 and March 2021.934 of the girls were younger than 14. It says 14 577 girls under the age of 19 gave birth during the same period the previous year.

Motshekga says the alarming rate of teenage pregnancy is not only a problem in Gauteng, but is a national problem that needs urgent action.

“The Department of Basic Education and stakeholders, we commit ourselves to intensify the implementation of the comprehensive sexuality education program which aims to empower young people with age-appropriate information. We will need once again to mobilize our communities and stakeholders to unite against this scourge. The time has come to bury our differences with the religious sector, the traditional leadership, and parents who had not read the material but were hoodwinked into disinformation around the programs that we’re successfully running with other parents.”

DISCUSSION | Shocking numbers of teenage pregnancies in Gauteng: