Uganda held the 2nd National Family Planning Conference at Serena Hotel On 26th and 27th of September 2017 under the theme “Universal access to Family Planning (FP) for healthier and empowered communities towards social and economic development.” The conference was to enlighten participants about family planning and Reproductive Health services to eradicate poverty from Uganda by ensuring people are knowledgeable on child spacing and limiting the number of children.
In the conference attended by about 700 participants, it was revealed that inadequate knowledge on the importance of Family Planning was a key driver of the high fertility rate in Uganda. According to the Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBOS) which conducted the Uganda Demographic and Health Survey (UDHS) of 2016, Total Fertility Rate (TFR) is the number of children a woman would have by the end of her child bearing years if she were to pass through those years bearing children at the current observed age -specific rates.
Addressing the conference, Uganda’s state Health Minister Hon. Sarah Opendi said that a number of women and the largest population among the adolescents were unaware of the importance of Family planning. She further advised that more information about Family planning should be provided to demystify myths about family planning. She tipped that Uganda can successfully eliminate poverty only if high fertility rate is managed. A high TFR poses as a huge threat to Uganda’s vision 2040 of transforming the Ugandan society into a modern, prosperous country in 30 years because with such a high TFR Uganda may never be prosperous because its population will always surpass the available resources.
In the same regard, Dr Wilberforce Kisamba Mugerwa advised people to avoid unplanned pregnancies which are a foundation to Uganda’s high population thus being a danger to the achievement the development goals.
He said that “Family planning has to be intensified for a large population cannot allow a country to enormously prosper”. There is therefore need for Uganda to better position Family Planning in the minds of its population as a development issue.