Family planning is a cure for population growth – MP

Christopher Arko, GNA

Accra, June 7 GNA – Dr Mark Kurt Nawaane,
Member of Parliament (MP) for Nabdam has stated that the antidote to
controlling population growth in Ghana is to ensure that proper family planning
methods were in place

According to him, family planning programmes
had decreased the fertility rate of women and enabled the contraceptive
prevalence rate to increase.

Dr Nawaane made this claim when he presented a
statement in Parliament towards the celebration of this year’s World Population
Day on July 11, 2017.

The theme for this year’s celebration: “Family
Planning; Empowering people, Developing Nations”.

The United Nations since 11th July,
1989 had commemorated the day as the World Population Day. By resolution 45/216
of December 1990, the United Nations General Assembly decided to continue
observing World Population Day to stimulate discussions on the critical issues
of population including its relation with the environment and development.

The World Population Day this year coincides
with the Family Planning summit expected to take place in London. The UK
Department for International Development would co-host the global summit the
United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation,
United States Agency for International Development and Global Affairs

Dr Nawaane also stated that the recent rapid
increase in human population over the past three centuries had raised concerns
that the planet Earth may not be able to sustain present or future numbers of

He said at the beginning of the 19th
Century, during the industrial revolution, the world population grew
significantly from 250 million people to 1 billion.

He said since 1950, due to medical advancement
and an increase in agricultural productivity there had been dramatic growth in
the world population.

At the turn of the 20th Century, the
world population was estimated at 1.6 billion people and by 1940 it stood at
2.3 billion people.

Currently UN population assessment report
estimates the world population as 7.5billion and expected to be 9 billion in
2050 and 15 billion by 2100.

Dr Nawaane also stated that the Family
Planning summit would enable stakeholders to provide a platform for donors to
complement and commit themselves to assist poor but needy countries to find
financial solutions to address the short fall in contraceptive.

He said the summit would also enable the
family planning community to share experiences and display technical
innovations that had the potential to accelerate progress in family planning.
This can be achieved through short films, data visualisation and other dynamic
story telling tools.

He said an estimated 225 million women in
developing countries who want to delay or stop childbearing were not using any
method of contraception. The reason for this include; cultural and religious
reasons, lack of information and limited access to contraception and lack of
cooperation from their men partners.

Dr Nawaane also explained that the range of
contraceptive methods over the last few decades had been increasing and
included condoms, female contraceptives, and female hormonal preparations intra
uterine devices, Norplant’s insertions, Minilaporatomy with bilateral tubal
ligation, the standard day’s method and the male sterilisation (Vasectomy).

He said family planning was key to slowing
unsustainable population growth and the resulting negative impacts on the
economy, environment and national development effort.

He said in history, 300 million women and
girls across 69 developing countries were now using modern contraceptives and
that had led to the prevention of 82million unwanted pregnancies, 25 million
unsafe abortions and 125,000 maternal deaths.

Dr Nawaane further stated that access to
voluntary Family Planning was a human right issue and central to gender
equality and women empowerment as well as a key factor to reducing poverty.

He said in Ghana Family Planning data since
1988 suggested a sluggish performance in the family planning programming.

He said between 1988 and 2014, the use of oral
contraceptive almost doubled from 13 to 22 percent. Also total fertility rate
dropped from 6.4 to 4 percent in 2008 and marginally increasing to 4.2 percent
in 2014.

He said the contraceptive prevalence rate
fluctuated from 19 percent in 2003 decreasing to 17 percent in 2008 and
increasing to 22 percent in 2014.

Dr Nawaane also stressed the need for the
country to carry out a comprehensive sexual education as a channel for
information for young people.

He said since faith, religious beliefs and
cultural practices and influenced Family Planning, there was the need to
explore sensitive approaches for the different population.

Dr Bernard Oko Boye, MP for Ledzokuku in his
contribution called for continuous sexual education among the people to ensure
that the family planning methods achieved the desire impact of decreasing the
fertility rate of women thereby reducing the population as a whole.

Mrs Dela Sowah, MP for Kpando in her
contribution urged couples to plan their families properly through the use of


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