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World Population Day: Focus on quality universal education

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Added 11th July 2018 09:03 AM

Uganda's population is placed at 37.7 million people as per the National Population Council and at 44 million by the World Statistical Survey.

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Uganda's population is placed at 37.7 million people as per the National Population Council and at 44 million by the World Statistical Survey.


By Onesmus Kansiime

Suggested by the former World Bank demographer Dr SC Zachariah, established by the governing council of the United Nations Development Programme and inspired by public interest, this annual event seeks to raise awareness of the global population issues vis-à-vis family planning, gender equality, poverty, maternal health and human rights.

These are dimensions with several semi-quadri dimensions.

As the press interest aims to notify at every billion increase, the world population increases by 100 million approximately after 14 months with the current global estimates of 7.6 billion human lives.

 And approximately one billion population increase  in 11 years since the settings of the 20th century and the risings of the 21st century with five billion people on July 11, 1989, six billion in October 1999, and 7 billion people by 31st October, 2011.

Relatedly, to note is that the intensive family planning is plunging this figure and trend of population increase. Such an event helps to draft demographic agendum such as the seven billion actions declared in commemoration of 31st October, 2011 by the United Nations population fund (UNFPA) which sought to “build global awareness around the opportunities and challenges associated with a world of seven billion people in addressing poverty, gender inequality, youth, skills, environment, reproductive health and rights

Uganda's population is placed at 37.7 million people as per the National Population Council and at 44 million by the World Statistical Survey.

Today's International theme is "Family planning is a Human right". None the less I expected the theme to roll about the immigration crisis. Uganda has chosen a related theme which is "leaving no one behind, improving service delivery and accountability".

The director general of the National population council Dr Jordan Musinguzi said that the reason as to why Uganda is diverting from the international theme is because Uganda has moved several inches on the ladder of family planning and that the aim for this national theme is to make sure that no one is left behind because those who are excluded tend to affect the rest and drag the country's development.

The national celebration will be held in Omoro district.

Today, the wealth fare gap has tremendously and shockingly widened. At the top, resources are being squandered and privileges accrue explosively pushing the economic divide with scarps that are further apart.

One of the aims of this day is promote equality which has been explained in terms of income or wealth- the dividing line been the rich and poor though many other social, political, racial and institutional dimensions feed on each other blocking the progress of pro people agendum on these margins.

Basing on the international theme, this year marks the 50th anniversary since the 1968 international conference on Human rights, where family planning was for the first time, globally affirmed as a human right in the conference's Teheran proclamation

. Though disparities and controversies still adorn the debate of which family planning is commendable on the basis of religious and secular procedure in a bid to race to the humane mark line.

Nonetheless, nine standards to uphold the human right to family planning include: nondiscrimination, service availability, service accessibility, service acceptability (services should be provided in a dignified manner respecting religious, medical and cultural ethics of those being accommodated), good quality, informed decision making on reproductive choices with full autonomy, privacy and confidentiality, participation of persons in making decisions that affect them, and accountability on the effort to provide this human right.

In celebrating this day, Uganda, having chosen a broader theme, should aim to harness the all-round feasted tables with several bones of problems through provision of  quality universal education for human capital development, reduction of infant, child and maternal mortality, increase access to reproductive and sexual health services such as prenatal and postnatal care, safe delivery, prevention and appropriate treatment of infertility, prevention of abortion, prevention of reproductive tract infections and STDs.

Education on human sexuality, reproductive health and responsible parenthood to those appropriately aged, services on HIV/AIDs, breast cancer, cervical cancer etc should be readily available.

I also recommend that campaigns on discouragement of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and unsafe male circumcision should be embarked on, efforts to end poverty, gender inequality, unemployment, environmental degradation shouldn't remain alien.

The focal aim of this day should be seen on harnessing the factors that affect human capital development and avoid depressed communities that live in fear which is common in most African countries suffering the weight of their dictatorial regimes.

The writer is a statistician and economist


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