A group of young girls from districts of Kamuli, Buyende and Nebbi have petition the Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga seeking special investigation into labor export companies that have left multitudes of girls suffering in the Middle East.
Nabaranda Fedrine Hope from Buyende district said the government should do thorough monitoring of labor export companies.
“I request the government to do thorough monitoring of all labor export companies and any company that is accused should be closed totally. They say that they take children there to work but they don’t mind about them. Their issue is money. Let the government itself export the girls, monitor them and make sure they are in good state,” she said.
She also condemned the acts of men that leak naked pictures of their ex-lovers especially after breaking up.
The group also condemned the song (my woman my property) released by a Uganda music star Fik Fameika saying that the musician degraded women.
The group urged lawmakers and the government at large to try and empower women adding that it will move Uganda ahead.
The group delivered their petition at the launch of “Girls Get Eqaul Campaign” driven by Plan International at Hotel Africana.
While speaking at the event, Greg Lavender, the Interim Country Director Plan International Uganda said that the campaign seeks to challenge the status quo of young women and girls.
“The campaign offers a real opportunity to drive lasting change for girls’ rights and equality and to bring transformative change not only for girls but contribute holistically to national development,” he said.
Greg further explained that the campaign is driven by 3 demands from girls including power to make crucial decisions affecting their lives, freedom to move to live and speak up without threat of violence and harassment.
“Regardless of who the girls are, where they live or who they regard as kin, Ugandan girls want to be able to access, exercise and enjoy their human rights free of fear, want and exclusion,” he added.
Anna Mutavati, UN Women Deputy Country Representative appreciated government for introducing programs like UPE, USE and affirmative action to bridge the gender gap in higher education and laws and policies like Children’s Act, female genital mutilation Act among others.
She however said that despite all the above, there is need for more action.
“In spite of the above, there is more work that needs to happen. We are still faced with harmful practices like child marriages, girls trafficking, female genital mutilation etc which are all consequences to a girl child,” she said.
She added that 1 in for 4 girls aged between 15 to 19 years are either pregnant or have had a child and 42% of these pregnancies are not planned.
She also said that close to 6 out of 10 new HIV/AIDS infections happen among girls between the ages of 15 to 19 years.
She further noted that some girls lack information and knowledge about sex and contraception.
The group was accompanied by Miss Uganda Quinn Abenakyo and the entire Miss Uganda Foundation as they delivered their petition.