Ms Doku made the revelation at a community durbar on family planning awareness and sexually transmitted infections prevention organised by DKT International Ghana, an NGO at Odumase-Krobo in the Lower Manya Krobo municipality in the Eastern Region. The programme was attended by pupils and students from both basic and senior high schools in the area as well as some traditional rulers and the public.
Ms Doku also said syphilis infection was also on the increase among pregnant women in the municipality and advised that all pregnant women who visited health facilities in the area should be tested so that they could be treated early to prevent their unborn children from being infected.
She, however, noted that some HIV-positive mothers who were on medication gave birth to children who tested negative, stressing that “we want to eliminate mother-to-child transmission of HIV and AIDS’’.
The director also observed that because of stigmatisation people who were infected did not want to go to hospitals to check their status which, she said, was dangerous.
The Fields Operations Manager of DKT International, Mrs Rosie Gbenegdji, said the organisation ran 21 programmes in 19 countries with its core mission being the provision of safe and affordable options for family planning and HIV/AIDS prevention.
She said the expansion of the programme to the Manya Krobo community was an opportunity to reach out to the people to educate them on family planning and the prevention of various STIs.
“We hope that together we can promote safe sex and healthy family,” the manager added.
A Deputy Director of Education in the Lower Manya Krobo municipality, Mrs Agnes Akweley Attipoe, expressed appreciation to the organisation for the intervention.
She noted that most often, it was the girls who fell prey to the boys which made them drop out of school.
The Municipal Coordinating Director for Manya Krobo, Mr Eric Hini, said the assembly placed priority on issues bordering on the health and development of women and girls as they formed part of Millennium Development Goals (MDG) four and five.
The acting President of the Manya Krobo Traditional Council, Nene Agbau Narh II, who chaired the function, asked the youth to take good care of themselves as the nation needed their service.