Don’t teach sex in schools - Museveni

Superintendent of Police Josephine Kakooza talks to President Museveni while inspecting a guard of honour commanded by Major Abwoli Kabajasi (left) during the International Women’s Day celebrations at Nebbi Town SS playground yesterday. Photo by PPU

What you need to know:

Nnabagereka denounces polygamy. President warns on encouraging promiscuity in schools as Buganda Queen says polygamy promotes HIV spread.

President Museveni has warned civil society organisations against promoting sex education in schools and asked the community to declare a zero tolerance for gender based violence.

Speaking at the national celebrations to mark the International Women’s Day in Nebbi, West Nile yesterday, the President warned that while the motive of “foreign NGO messages on sex education” may be good, they must not encourage promiscuity and turn classrooms into bedrooms.

Mr Museveni says, instead of promoting the use of condoms under the guise that it will prevent the spread of sexually transmitted diseases, unwanted pregnancies and unnecessary abortions, the NGOs and teachers should focus on abstinence.

“Be careful with some of these messages from foreign NGOs. For them they are saying a child can become a wife as long as she uses a condom. This is not the way to counsel our children,” Mr Museveni said.

“Our message is put padlocks on your private parts until the time comes to open them when you have a husband. You are not there just to taste and taste (jaribu, jaribu). I can’t tell my daughter or granddaughter to do that. If you start with the right message from the beginning, they will take it.”

Mr Museveni also warned that if the practice is promoted in schools, the country will plunge into immorality.

Although there have been efforts to fight gender-based violence, the President noted that it still occurrs in homes, schools and workplaces. He further proposed that those who engage in incest and defilement be hanged to stop the crime completely.

“I don’t support the idea of mutilation for men who commit incest or defilement. I think hanging them is much better. Girls are not only threatened by harmful cultural practices such as female genital mutilation, and defilement, it goes on with impunity leading to many negative consequences,” he said.

Although the government has been promoting the ABC (Abstinence, be faithful and the use of condom) in the fight against HIV/Aids, the Ministry of Education, according to Mr Aggrey Kibenge, the undersecretary, advocates only abstinence in schools.

He urges that their biggest population in schools are minors (below 18 years) and should not be introduced to behaviour that will provoke their instinct.

“The children in our schools are very young and active. I can’t imagine my child in P2 being taught sex education. What does she know?” Mr Kibenge asked in an earlier interview with Daily Monitor.

The women, through their National Women Council chairperson, Ms Rose Najjemba, want the government to reinforce the socio-economic and political programmes for women with more funds. She said yesterday that human rights for girls have been compromised.

“The women in Uganda are still not benefiting from the economic empowerment. I propose that any man who commits incest, should be castrated and we shall push for the law on this,” Ms Najjembe added.

The Regional Representative of UN Women for East and Horn of Africa, Ms Simone Elis, also asked government to enforce the relevant laws that protect and promote girls education and women’s rights.

“The gender-based violence has frustrated efforts to promote rights of girls and women and even economic empowerment should be geared towards poverty alleviation,” she said.