The Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga has called upon the church leaders to encourage people to adopt family planning methods.
Kadaga said the Catholic Church has from time immemorial preached against families practicing family planning.
“The church leaders play a very instrumental role in shaping societies; the church however, does not want to talk about family planning and shuns it,” she said.
Kadaga added that modern family planning methods plays an instrumental role in helping people raise families they can manage and also control population growth.
Kadaga made these remarks at the launch of the RISE, a modern family planning method campaign under the theme; “Empowering women through innovative approaches to social protection” run by Marie Stopes Uganda.
Kadaga added that young people need targeted sensitisation to help them understand the danger of early pregnancies and the lack of family planning.
“The census results of the districts show information on children who have been married and have had children at a tender age. This is something that needs to be handled by the campaign,” Kadaga said.
The Speaker called for implementation of the project on the islands.
“The Islands people have always been left out because they are in clusters so this time round, they need to be involved in this campaign,” she said.
The Minister of State for Primary Health Care, Dr. Joyce Moriku said that Uganda has been lagging behind in terms of adopting family planning.
“Women face challenges in adopting family planning like fear of the health facilities, their partners opposing them and the side effects that might arise,” Moriku said.
Moriku added that government supports the exercise because people need to be counselled about the side effects of these drugs and involving their partners.
“Our President made a strong commitment to support family planning and the Government has committed US$5 million annually to expand the efforts on family planning,” she said.
The country representative of Marie Stopes, Dr. Carole Sekimpi said the programme intends to reduce maternal mortality and increase the use of modern contraceptives in Uganda.
“We want to increase awareness on the benefits of modern contraceptives; access to quality family planning services and access to age appropriate sexual reproductive health information for adolescents,” Dr. Sekimpi added.
UNFPA representative, Tabitha Miranda said that they are trying to address Uganda’s population challenge and improve family planning uptake.
She said that UNFPA will be targeting 19 districts including Karamoja and 12 refugee-hosting districts.
“We want to track resource investment in family planning; review health education related policies to fill knowledge gaps; develop a national engagement strategy on sexual and health reproduction among others,” Miranda said.