“The City of Tshwane would like to encourage young people to abstain from risky behaviour that may lead to early or unwanted pregnancies.
“Often babies are abandoned or given up for adoption, which places an additional burden on the child welfare system.
“Early teenage sexual activity also increases the risk of contracting and spreading sexually transmitted diseases such as HIV,” Marx said.
The city urged teenagers and their parents to visit its municipal clinics for relevant information on teenage pregnancy, choices on possible termination of pregnancy and available contraceptives.
“The facilities provide health promotion leaflets in different languages, free contraceptives and ‘happy hour’ sessions between 2pm and 3pm daily, where teenagers get preference to receive related health services and advice,” Marx said.
“Now is the time for all of us — including parents, teachers, church leaders and the community at large — to act decisively to help our future leaders to make informed and responsible decisions.”