Media Network on Child Rights and Development (MNCRD) Executive Director Henry Kabwe says the Comprehensive Sexual Education (CSE) curriculum has to be maintained as it was introduced to respond to the growing cases of pregnancy among school going children across the country.
Mr Kabwe said out of 7,000 pregnancies that are recorded in a year, over 60 percent are recorded among primary schools hence the need to have the curriculum to educate pupils in order to curb the occurrence of the high number of pregnancies amongst school going children.
Speaking in an interview with ZANIS in Lusaka, Mr Kabwe noted that it is disturbing that people have petitioned the curriculum which equips girls and boys with knowledge in order to guard against social vices that can negatively affect them.
Mr Kabwe stressed the need for those in authority to show leadership on CSE to enable the public understand the essence of the curriculum.
“I am hoping that the men of God who are championing this petition will be concerned about the best interest of children and those girls who cannot have access to education so that they can have more spaces for them to complete their education,” he said.
He stated that there is need for those championing the petition to fully understand the contents of the curriculum.
“People should not just follow the petition that is being championed in the USA because the curricula are not similar, they should not base their petition on the information package produced by the United States of America,” he said.
He added that the curriculum they are opposing was meant to ensure that girls get educated by being taught how to make decisions as well as to make sure they do not fall for prey to premature sex.
He advised the public not to be deceived by those championing the petition, and urged the government to challenge the petition.
Mr Kabwe said that the clergy should look at the curriculum and highlight issues they feel are not fit to be in the curriculum and present them to the Ministry of Education.
“The men of God should present the highlighted issues to the Ministry of Education instead of championing the withdrawal using fake information from an American organization,” he noted.
He said that the public should take interest in reading and make decisions over matters that are affecting the nation.
Comprehensive Sexual Education is a curriculum based process of teaching and learning about the cognitive, emotional, physical and social aspects of sexuality.
It is aimed at equipping school going children and young people with knowledge, skills, attitudes and values that will empower them to realize their health.
A number of stakeholders have expressed mixed feelings over the introduction of CSE programmes in early grades in primary schools across the country.