Parents blame the issue on older men who lure girls fit to be their children into sex with money and gifts but are never apprehended and tried for their crimes. They instead keep roaming and impregnating more teenagers.
Nyiramanimba Josephine, one of the parents whose child was impregnated at only 17 years old said “I call the men who defile our children rapists because that is what they are. My only concern is that they are never judged for it and stay free, endangering more and more teenage girls. If those men keep raping our children in all impunity, teenage pregnancies will increase and we don’t have the power to stop it apart from reporting those we suspect.”
Turatsinze Emmanuel said that “The remedy to teenage pregnancies is severely punishing the criminals and bystanders as well. I believe it will allow to eradicate such a vice in our society. It is a shame that some men cannot control their impulses and defile girls who sometimes have the same ages as their own daughters. We demand justice because if it is not served, our children will keep falling into the claws of those predators.”
Nyabihu district vice-mayor for social affairs, Pascal Simpenzwe said that teenage pregnancies have reached an alarming point but that the district administration has doubled efforts to identify suspects and try them in a court of law.
“We have a list of suspects who are currently under investigation. We will not overlook rapists as they are not only damaging the future of our children but also the future of the country.”
In 2018, 250 minor rape suspects were reported in Nyabihu. Dossiers for 140 among them have been completed while 58 cases have already been submitted to prosecution.