Action Hope Malawi has appealed to Members of Parliament to deliberate more on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) issues and pass laws that should empower young people to make informed decisions about sexual and reproductive health without hiccups.
Action Hope Malawi, Executive Director, Sammy Aaron, made the appeal in Zomba where he had interface meeting with Members of Parliament, chiefs, district youth office and other partners in SRHR.
He said Action Hope Malawi called for the interface meeting to raise awareness on challenges the young people face when accessing SRHR services in health facilities.
Aaron added that you people should be allowed to be oriented on issues of SRHR because they encounter various problems regarding sexuality.
“Young people are future leaders as such there is no need for them to fall pregnant and get sexual transmitted infections due to lack of information and decisions on SRHR,” Aaron added.
He therefore asked the MPs to priotise SRHR issues as one of key areas of consideration so that young people should be empowered to make informed decisions on sexual and reproductive health.
Youth Friendly Health Services Coordinator at Zomba City Clinic, Hellen Truwah said most young people fail to access SRHR services because most of health facilities are not conducive enough for the services.
Truwah who is also Nurse and midwifery technician observed that lack of spaces for Youth Friendly Health Services in most health facilities are a challenge to young people saying this results in pregnancies amongst adolescent girls and young women plus sexual transmitted infections among adolescents and young people.
“Young people fail to access SRHR services in the same room where adults also seek the same services,” she added.
She further observed that young people fail to access SRHR services in most CHAM facilities as a result most young people around such facilities are denied services such that they become vulnerable to pregnancies and sexual transmitted infections.
Member of Parliament for Zomba Malosa, Grace Kwelepeta said Parliament has been deliberating on issues to do with youth socio-economic empowerment for a number of times and it was her expectation that Parliament will one day pass a bill on issues to do with young people’s sexual and health rights.
She observed that most young people face a lot of challenges in access SRHR prompting adolescent girls and young women to fell pregnant and terminate the pregnancy on their own.