Home General Tanzania cracks the whip on family planning advertisements – Politics – Pulselive.co.ke

Tanzania cracks the whip on family planning advertisements – Politics – Pulselive.co.ke

by kenya-tribune
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Days after claiming that family planning was for those “too lazy to take care of their children”, Tanzania has now suspended broadcasting of family planning advertisements.

In a
letter signed by the permanent secretary in the ministry covering health and
gender issues asked the head of FHI 360, a US-based non-governmental
organisation, to immediately stop airing advertisements under a project called
Tulonge Afya (Let’s speak health).

“The
ministry intends to revise the contents of all your ongoing radio and TV spots
for family planning, thus I request you to stop with immediate effect airing
and publishing any family planning contents in any media channels until further
notice,”
the
letter, dated September 19, said.


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Tulonge Afya (Let’s speak health). (Malunde)

 

A source
at the health ministry who did not wish to be named confirmed the letter’s
authenticity.

On
September 9, Tanzania President John Magufuli expressed his doubts about family
planning and condemned the use of contraception and urged Tanzanians to
continue reproducing.


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Tanzania President John Magufuli (eNCA)

 

Speaking
during a public rally on Sunday, Magufuli said only lazy people use birth
control.

You have cattle. You are big farmers. You can feed
your children. Why then resort to birth control? This is my opinion, I see no
reason to control births in Tanzania.

“Those
going for family planning are lazy because they are afraid they will not be
able to feed their children,

Magufuli is quoted by The Citizen newspaper as saying.

“If you
cannot work then opt for family planning but if you can work hard why family
planning?” he posed.

Officials
from FHI 360 and USAid Tanzania office are yet to respond to the letter.


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Tanzania school girls. (International Business Times)

In 2017,
Mr. Magufuli also waded into controversy after banning pregnant school girls
from school.

He argued
that allowing young mothers to continue with their education would be a mistake
since they would be distracted if they were allowed back in school.

Ukishapata
mimba ni Kwaheri
Translated: (After getting pregnant, you are done.) He said.

Teenage
pregnancy in Tanzania continues to pose serious social and economic challenges
and has been on the rise.

According
to government data, the number of pregnancies in girls aged between 15 – 19
continues to rise – increasing from 23% in 2010 to 27% in 2015. This is higher
than it was 20 years ago.



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