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'Sex can be nice but a baby is there for a lifetime'

Speaking to a group of teenagers from the community they expressed shock at the high number of their peers falling pregnant or fathering a child.

Picture: Kgothatso Mogale/EWN

JOHANNESBURG – Two sisters at the same Johannesburg school have described to Eyewitness News how difficult it is to be pregnant and keep up with the high volume of school work.

According to the latest available statistics from the Basic Education Department, more than 8,000 pupils fell pregnant last year, with more than 240 of these pupils in primary school.

A new policy on HIV and diseases for learners and educators in primary and secondary schools has introduced a comprehensive sex education section in the curriculum and access to contraception.

In a Johannesburg township, a grade 10 pupil sits on her bed dressed in her school uniform which stretches tight over her belly.

The 16-year-old is eight months pregnant and is battling to keep up with her school work.

“Sometimes I can’t do my homework, I experience so many problems and sometimes when I eat, I just vomit. Some pupils judge me but I don’t care about that.”

Her 20-year-old sister who is in the same school in grade 11 gave birth to a baby boy about a week ago.

Speaking to a group of teenagers from the community, they expressed shock at the high number of their peers falling pregnant or fathering a child.

“Sex can be nice but a baby is there for a lifetime. I would even think of killing myself," a female pupil said.

“Sometimes when we impregnate girls, we’re afraid to take responsibility. I’d be ashamed of myself,” a male learner in the group said.

The teens say they still feel judged by their educators or nurses when trying to get contraception.

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)