Former MP for Micoud North, Jeannine Compton-Antoine, expressing concern about under-age pregnancies here, has asserted that the case of a pregnant eleven year old represents the tip of the iceberg.
“This is a problem in Saint Lucia,” Compton-Antoine told the Times.
The former MP said that Saint Lucia is listed online as one of the countries with a number of young mothers, including a ten year old who became pregnant some years ago.
Compton-Antoine felt it was a matter that Saint Lucia has to deal with as a country, recognizing that the national social fabric is being eroded.
“We need to stop paying lip service to it and stop using it for platform rhetoric and other things,” the former MP, who has declared her intention to run as an Independent in Micoud North at the next elections, told the Times.
She noted that the government, the opposition and every Saint Lucian have to work together, since the issue of under-age pregnancies cannot be politicized or be dealt with by means of a partisan approach.
“We all need to recognize there is something wrong happening in our country and we all need to work together to deal with it,” Compton-Antoine declared, adding that there must be a strategic plan to address the problem.
Just yesterday Education Minister, Doctor Robert Lewis, announced that the pregnant pre-teen will sit the Common Entrance Examination.
Lewis said that while his Ministry would allow the police and the Department of Human Services to deal with the pregnancy issue, it would seek to ensure that the child’s education is not affected.
“We must not terminate the child’s education in any way,” Lewis told reporters.
The child is reported to have alleged that she had sex with a seventeen year old male.
Media reports have indicated that the Micoud resident is some five months pregnant.