Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (MoEST) Principal Secretary Justin Saidi says the ministry needs girls and the youth to get educated and contribute to the country’s development and the Sustainable Development Goals.
Saidi made the remarks at Bingu International Convention Centre (Bicc) in Lilongwe yesterday when he presided over the launch of the revised learner readmission policy and the Let’s Talk Campaign on early and unintended pregnancies.
The revision of the policy and launch of the Let’s Talk Campaign were facilitated by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) with support from the Norwegian Embassy.
Said the PS: “The policy and campaign tackle issues to do with keeping adolescent girls in school. We understand that for them to be educated, there is a need to control all the evils that come along their way hence the launch of this campaign that aims at eliminating early and unintended pregnancies.
“The readmission policy is meant to encourage girls who fall pregnant to return to school and despite it being an old policy, the revision has removed some barriers which were hindering the process.”
On her part, UNFPA country representative Young Hong expressed hope that both the Let’s Talk Campaign and the revised policy will have a positive impact on behaviour change in terms of sexual reproductive health and rights, including knowledge of HIV and Aids as well as maternal and child health.
“Acquisition of such knowledge, attitudes and skills will result in youths, especially girls, becoming productive citizens who will contribute towards national development. Central to these efforts must be the promotion of access to health services, including appropriate sexual and reproductive health and family planning,” she said. Unesco national programme officer Charles Mazinga said the Let’s Talk Campaign seeks, among others, to support the delivery of quality comprehensive sexuality education that improves lives of adolescent girls and young women.