Covid-19 crisis: all you need to know about available vaccines.

The Covid-19 (SARS-CoV-2) crisis has created an unprecedented need for vaccines globally. As vaccines are being developed rapidly and approved without compromising clinical trial protocols, there are concerns of equitable distribution. Wealthy nations represent just 16% of the world’s population, but they have bought more than half of global SARS-CoV-2 vaccine doses. At the time of writing, more than 244 million people have taken the vaccination shots worldwide, most of them in wealthy nations, while more than 2 billion people in some 210 countries are yet to receive a single shot. Vaccines are essential public health tools. There is no doubt that these vaccines are safe, effective, and hold the key to mitigating the pandemic’s ravaging impact. Otherwise, why would there be a rush to hoard the vaccines? COVAX, a global alliance comprising 190 countries, including Ghana, was established to ensure safe, effective, and equitable distribution of vaccine doses. Therefore, Ghana set the pace to be the first recipient of the COVAX vaccine in an ambitious global vaccination drive. Already, there are good signs that the vaccines are working. For the past seven weeks, global cases of the pandemic have decreased consecutively, according to a monitory report from the World Health Organization (WHO). Analysts have attributed the decrease to the rapid roll-out of vaccines and the continuous strict observation of SARS-CoV-2 restriction protocols in many countries worldwide. But not sufficient data is available to support these claims amid the emergence of more contagious variants of the virus. In Africa, the virus’s new variants have taken an aggressive toll, pushing the total number of deaths to surpass 100 thousand. Therefore, rapid deployment and roll-out of vaccines are essential to stop the further spread of the new variants. As a country with already constraint healthcare systems, a prolonged burden of SARS-CoV-2 and its mutants could be catastrophic. It will only be prudent to deploy the available vaccines as urgently as possible. The longer the SARS-CoV-2 continues to infect and spread in the population, the more new and complex variants we must deal with. Widespread skepticism and vaccine hesitancy might undermine our national vaccination efforts. But collectively, we can prevail. Here, an attempt is made to provide some information on all that you need to know about some available vaccines to make an informed decision.

What does a vaccine do, and how is it made?

A vaccine trains the immune system to defend the body against disease. This is done by prompting the immune system to create protective proteins called antibodies. A vaccine does not cause disease or put you at risk of complications because it contains a killed or weakened form of the virus necessary to elicit the antibodies which fight against the real viral infection when exposed. Therefore, vaccination is a safe and effective way of protecting people against infectious diseases before they get infected. In general, vaccines are made based on three main approaches used to trigger the immune system to produce antibodies without causing disease. The whole-microbe approach uses the whole germ (virus or bacterium). But it is killed or inactivated using chemicals, heat, or radiation. The flu and polio vaccines, for example, use this approach. Under this approach, a live virus can also be weakened or attenuated to make the vaccine elicit an immune response in the body without causing disease. Examples of live-attenuated vaccines are measles, mumps, rubella (MMR), and chickenpox and shingle vaccines that are already familiar and used globally to control these diseases effectively. Also, a harmless virus (vector) can be used to deliver specific sub-parts or proteins of the germ to elicit an immune response in the body. The Ebola vaccine is an example of a viral vector vaccine. The subunit approach uses subunits or specific parts of the virus that the immune system needs to recognize to elicit an immune response. This type of vaccine does not use a whole virus or a harmless virus as a vector to trigger an immune response. Whooping cough, tetanus, diphtheria, and meningococcal vaccines are examples of subunit vaccines. Finally, the genetic approach is novel and uses a section of the genetic material (nucleic acid) that provides instructions for making specific proteins of the virus.

What is contained in a vaccine?

The ingredients in a vaccine each play an essential role in making the vaccine safe and efficacious. A vaccine normally contains the antigen, which is the killed, inactivated, or weakened form of the virus, which trains the body to recognize and fight diseases when exposed. A vaccine also contains an adjuvant (like aluminum phosphate, aluminium hydroxide, or potassium aluminium sulphate), which helps the vaccine work better by boosting the immune response. Preservative (2-phenoxyethanol) is also contained in a vaccine to ensure that it remains safe. Finally, the vaccine contains a stabilizer (lactose, sucrose, glycine, or yeast-derived albumen) which protects the vaccine during storage and transportation.

Which Covid-19 vaccines are available and approved?

The Oxford AstraZeneca and the Sputnik V vaccines utilize the viral vector approach design. They have been approved by the Food and Drug Authority (FDA). The Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine originated from Britain. Under the vaccine equity distribution scheme (COVAX Facility), this vaccine was made available to Ghana from the Serum Institute of India, a partner company. The Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine showed 62% efficacy in clinical trials. According to experts, any vaccine with an efficacy rate of over 50% could stop outbreaks. More importantly, this vaccine is proven to be safe and effective against SARs-CoV-2 symptomatic infection and could reduce hospitalization and death. Therefore, it is prudent to utilize the vaccine under the present public health circumstances. The WHO Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization (SAGE) has recommended using the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine. In Europe, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) has approved AstraZeneca. More than 40 countries, including Britain, India, and Mexico, have already authorized the vaccine. But, in Denmark, Germany, and Lithuania, the vaccine will not be given to people older than 65 due to insufficient data documenting its benefits for that age group. The exclusion of this group was based on the precautionary principle and nothing to suggest that the AstraZeneca vaccine has bad effects on the elderly. Although in South Africa, vaccination with the AstraZeneca vaccine has been paused due to data suggesting its ineffectiveness against the virus’s new variants, the data remains scanty. The sputnik V vaccine (also known as Gam-COVID-Vac) is manufactured in the Russian state Institute, Gamaleya. Though initially met with criticisms of inappropriate haste, corner-cutting, and a lack of transparency in its development, a recent phase 3 clinical trial report showed the clear scientific principle of vaccination had been demonstrated. The Sputnik V vaccine was found to be 92% effective. But the results were demonstrated in white adults aged 18 years and older pending further trials in diverse participants. The vaccine was found to exhibit a strong protective effect against SARS- CoV-2 in all participant age groups. Though the Sputnik V vaccine is under review by SAGE, more than 20 countries, including Russia, Iran, Argentina, UAE, Palestine state, Hungary, Egypt, and Algeria, have authorized its use.

Other vaccines such as Johnson and Johnson vaccine (vector vaccine) has an efficacy of 66%, while the Pfizer- BioNTech and Moderna vaccines that use genetic approach designs have an efficacy of 95% and 94%, respectively. The oxford AstraZeneca, Sputnik V, and the Johnson and Johnson vaccines are more suitable and convenient for use in our context compared with the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines which are logistically handicapped in terms of storage and distribution. The Pfizer- BioNTech, Moderna, and AstraZeneca are the first three vaccines authorized and widely deployed in many countries including Britain, the European Union, and the United States.

Oxford-AstraZeneca and Sputnik V compared with other vaccines.

Vaccine/countryTypeDosesInterval between dosesEffectiveness (%)Age groupLong-term duration of protectionStorage
Oxford Uni-AstraZeneca/Britain, IndiaViral vector (genetically modified)x 28 to 12 weeks6218 years and aboveNo sufficient data availableRegular fridge temperature
Gamaleya (Sputnik V)/RussiaViral vectorx 221 days9218 years and aboveNo data sufficient data availableRegular fridge temperature
Moderna /USARNA (part of genetic code)x 228 days9418 years and aboveNo sufficient data available-20 oC up to 6 months
Pfizer-BioNTech/USA, GermanyRNAx 221 to 28days9516 years and aboveNo sufficient data available-70 oC
Johnson and Johnson/USAViral vectorx 1 6618 years and aboveNo sufficient data available2-8oC for three months or -20 oC for 2 years

Who should take a vaccine?

All the vaccines that have been proven safe and effective, including the Oxford-AstraZeneca and the Russian Sputnik V vaccines, did not recruit children below 18 years old, pregnant, and breastfeeding mothers in clinical trials. Therefore, limited data exist to document the safety and effectiveness of these vaccines among these population groups. This is the main reason why these groups are currently excluded from taking the available vaccines. But pregnant women may receive the vaccine if the benefit of vaccinating a pregnant woman outweighs the potential vaccine risks. However, the vaccination should be done in consultation with a healthcare provider.

Those who are 18 years and older can take the vaccine. Available SARS-CoV-2 data should be used to inform prioritized groupings for the vaccination. But since the vaccines are limited, it is recommended that healthcare workers who are at high risk of exposure and people above the age of 65 should be prioritized. Also, persons with comorbidities, including obesity, cardiovascular disease, respiratory disease, and diabetes, are at high risk of severe SARS-CoV-2 are recommended to take the vaccination shot. Furthermore, those who have had SARS-CoV-2 infection in the past should take the vaccination. But they can choose to take the shot after six months from the time of infection. This is because a person who has recovered from the infection has circulating antibodies in his/her body that offers a certain degree of protection for at least six months. Though there is insufficient data on people living with HIV or autoimmune conditions or who are immunosuppressed, individuals can take their vaccination shots in consultation with a healthcare provider if they have been prioritized or recommended to take the vaccination. Finally, people with a severe allergic reaction to any vaccine ingredient should avoid taking a shot.

 What are the Side effects after taken the vaccine?

Mild side effects are normal with any vaccine inoculation. The side effects signify that the vaccine is working and that your body’s immune system is reacting to the vaccine as it should. Most people will experience pain with redness and swelling at the injection site after taking the vaccination shot. Other common side effects include fatigue, headache, muscle and joint pain, chills, and a slight temperature rise. These side effects are well-known and transient, so you do not need to call your doctor if you experience such effects. However, it is recommended that those who experience a severe reaction after taking a vaccination shot should seek immediate medical attention and avoid the second dose later.

What is herd immunity?

Herd immunity is the point at which the population is resistant to the virus. When 70% or more of the population is vaccinated, it is possible to achieve herd immunity after some time when the virus cannot infect people and eventually vanquished from the population. However, this depends on the virus’s contagiousness, which is measured by the reproductive number, R. The R number is how many people each infected person will infect on average. Also, the efficacy of a vaccine is a key determinant of herd immunity. The higher the efficacy of a vaccine used in vaccination, the more likely the possibility of achieving herd immunity quickly within the threshold. A low efficacy vaccine would require that we vaccinate a wider population or entire population to achieve herd immunity- this is sometimes hard to achieve and not feasible. In comparison, the Sputnik V vaccine is more likely to facilitate herd immunity than the AstraZeneca vaccine due to its high efficacy. Therefore, strategically, the two vaccines may be used among the prioritized population groups to facilitate herd immunity. Since we have two shots or doses for each vaccine, it is important to ensure that the second dose comes from the same vaccine as the first dose.

How can we achieve herd immunity?

Herd immunity is important. It protects those unvaccinated, such as children, pregnant women, breastfeeding mothers, and the immunosuppressed. We can reach herd immunity either by waiting long enough so that large parts of the society pass through infection, by reducing the infection through observing SARS-CoV-2 restriction protocols forever, or by vaccinating enough people. But we cannot afford further spread of the virus or observe SARS-CoV-2 restrictions forever. That is why vaccination holds the key to getting our normal life back from the pandemic. The science behind herd immunity probably informed the government target of getting 20 million Ghanaians vaccinated. Collectively, we can support the national vaccination efforts towards achieving herd immunity by getting vaccinated and encouraging more people to get vaccinated. Though we cannot rely solely on vaccines, the availability of vaccines offers us the opportunity to take a step ahead of the virus while observing basic public health rules. Strategic communication for SARS-CoV-2 vaccination is crucial and should be a collective responsibility of healthcare professionals, policymakers, the media, chiefs, opinion leaders, and the public.


Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

World Health Organization.

Sexually Transmitted Diseases to Babies

Sexually Transmitted Diseases to Babies Image

Sexually transmitted diseases as the name suggests, are transmitted through sexual contact. In sub-Saharan Africa, Statistics show that sexually transmitted diseases are among the main reasons why most people seek medical care. 

However, this statistics largely refer to men, and reveals that women in these regions are slow to seek medical attention in regard to sexual diseases. 

This puts these children and many in other African regions at risk because there is an incredible number of sexually transmitted infections that can be transmitted through a mother during pregnancy or, during childbirth. 

Among these infections include HIV, gonorrhea, syphilis, herpes, Chlamydia, hepatitis B, and HPV. 

Reports from centers for disease and control, CDC reveal risk factors that are predominant in Africa and predispose infants to maternal sexually transmitted infections; this includes the relationship status of the mother and her sex partner, including his fidelity to her as a sex partner and the consistency of the relationship.  

Poverty, homelessness and her inability to access timely STD screening and treatment services has also been reported to increase her risk of STI infections 

Prevalence of Sexually Transmitted Diseases among Babies in Africa

Evidence shows that of the listed STI’s that are transmitted to babies in Africa, HIV is given quite an emphasis due to the numerous debilitating effects that come with the disease, not to mention the stigma, high probability of death, and suffering to both mother and child. These efforts have seen a tremendous decline in mother to child transmission from 30% to 1%.

However, although syphilis is known to have equally severe consequences on pregnancies and newborns in these regions, it has not received an equal measure of mobilization towards eradication. The prevalence of syphilis infection among pregnant women in sub-Saharan Africa is estimated to be 2.7%, which represents nearly 1 million pregnancies to be at risk annually.

More than 50% of children born with congenital syphilis in Africa are initially asymptomatic, making a prenatal diagnosis of maternal infection vital to improving mother-child pregnancy outcomes.

Gonorrhoeae, Chlamydia trachomatis, or Trichomonas vaginalis in pregnant women can be as high as 25% of sexual infections among newborns in Africa.

Globally neonatal herpes maternal transmissions although rare, accounts are estimated to be 14,000 annually, with majority of this numbers originating from Africa.

Effect of the STI Diseases on Babies in Africa

Mother to child transmissions during pregnancy and childbirth in Africa can result in neonatal deaths, stillbirth, sepsis, conjunctivitis, congenital deformities, low birth weight, and premature newborns. 

Extreme effects of STIs may include blindness, physical disability, mental retardation, and even death. 


Viral STI’s are not treatable; however, all the bacterial infection causing STIs are curable, including syphilis. However, adverse effects of syphilis in Africa in both the mother and child are preventable. 

In Tanzania, this was done with effective screening and then treating with a single intramuscular dose of benzathine penicillin. 

Conclusion – STI’s Among Babies In Africa

Sexually transmitted diseases among babies remains a serious threat, however, treatment is available for most of the curable infections when presented timely in hospitals. 

HIV screening for pregnant women in Africa to prevent maternal infection is effective and is duly carried out among women attending antenatal care.

Although it has received challenges in some resource-poor settings, screening of syphilis among pregnant women attending antenatal care is also done routinely in this region. 

How Aware are Africans of STDs? Take a Look At This Recent Survey

How Aware are Africans of STDs? Take a Look At This Recent Survey Image

STDs are a massive health burden, particularly in low-income regions like the African continent. They’ve also had massive economic and social consequences. 

Recently, however, more countries and organizations have organized courses, centers, and volunteers to educate the African population on STDs’ importance, like syphilis, gonorrhea, chlamydia, etc. In some areas, the infection rates have been dropping. But, there is still a huge number of people infected.

The question is, have these efforts paid off? How many Africans are actually aware of STDs? We’ve decided to take a closer look at rural communities and poorer African regions. Here is what a recent statistical survey has to say. 

HIV Awareness in Africa

Over 68% of people infected with HIV live in Africa. In 2018, 800,000 new infections were registered in the southern and eastern parts of this continent. Does that mean not many people are aware of the infection?

Researchers asked over 1 million Africans from 35 countries, whether they think condoms will reduce the chance of contracting HIV. 66.8% of the participants answered “yes.” But, when they were asked whether sex will expose them to HBV, just 42.5% answered “yes.” 

In South Africa, researchers asked a different question. They gathered over 11,000 participants between the ages of 15 to 25. They were asked whether they understand the risk of HIV. Only 42.5% answered, “yes.” 

Another topic covered in the survey was mosquito bites. When asked whether they think a mosquito bite can get them infected with HIV, 16.8% of the 95,856 Nigerian citizens answered “yes.”

Based on reports, when a mosquito bites, only the saliva is injected into the human blood. Not the HIV positive cells. Compared to other mosquito-borne diseases, HIV is not one of them. The insect’s gut can’t replicate the HIV cells, which means it gets broken down before it can actually get transmitted. 

STDs Awareness in Africa

The African population is still not fully aware of the impact of HIV, let alone STIs. 

It seems there is still a place to implement the need to share knowledge. When asked if they are familiar with gonorrhea, only 22.8% of the 1,123 people evaluated in Madagascar and Nigeria answered “yes.” 

Their main sources of information came from friends or colleagues. But, in regions such as these, awareness should be enforced, experts recommend. By highlighting the impact of infections like STIs and HIV, we can reduce the gap of weakness and lack of knowledge and increase the quality of life.


Things Are Elephant: The Effect of COVID-19 in Nairobi Low-Income Areas

Things Are Elephant: The Effect of COVID-19 in Nairobi Low-Income Areas Image

The containment measures implemented by both the national government, coupled up by the Nairobi Metropolitan area curfew, have rendered nearly 30% of low-income earners jobless, a report has revealed.

A recent report by TIFA shows that over 2.5 million low-income earners in Nairobi have had their source of livelihood interrupted because of the lockdown. This had led to an increase in the number of sexual disease infections.

TIFA Report

  1. The LockDown

The survey titled “Covid-19 Global Pandemic in Nairobi’s Low-Income Areas” was conducted in Kibera, Mukuru Kwa Njenga, Kwangware, Mathare and Huruma.

According to the report, about 60% of the people who have incurred significant losses say the government should lift the restriction so they can get back to their daily economic activities, even if it means getting the virus.

The report further reveals that 75% of the households could face starvation because of the disrupted source of livelihood.  So, many of the city dwellers are desperate to make end meets.

  1. Traffic Ban and Curfew

Social interactions and movement have also suffered a huge blow. Travel bans in and out of Nairobi and the implementation of the 7 PM to 5 AM curfew has affected over 66% of the city dwellers.  Most of them cannot travel upcountry to be with their families.

The report also notes that 57% of the low-income earners are anxious about the continuation of the travel ban and curfew in Nairobi, and they want the restriction to be lifted so they can resume their normal daily activities.

  1. Increased Crime Rate

Another reason why over 80% of the respondents want the restriction to be lifted is that they fear a spike in crime rates. They’re concerned that the city might revert to its grim state during the Nyayo era. An era where theft and daytime robbery was the norm.

Mama Mwaniki one of the respondents who own a vegetable stall says she closes her job as early as 4 PM every day because she fears the gangs of young men who troll the streets mugging and pick-pocketing citizens as soon as dusk approaches.

With the constant rise of COVID-19 cases and deaths, It’s no surprise that the majority of the citizens are skeptical if things will change.  Majority of the people fear to contract the virus.


It’s no secret. The COVID-19 crisis has affected both the social and economic life of most Nairobi citizens. Everybody has a different view on the lockdown and restriction placed and whether they’re effective at curbing this menace.

Most of the respondents had high hopes that the president would lift the night curfew and travel ban on June 6th, 2020. But the president only extended the deadlines for the lockdown and reduced the curfew period.  He also hinted at a policy to open up the country.

Only July 6th, 2020, the president addressed the nation, lifting the partial lockdown imposed for months. On July 7th, 2020 the cessation of movement in and out of Nairobi was removed but the night-time curfew remained in place for another 30 days.

This finally means that low-income earners in Nairobi can resume their economic activities. However, the Coronavirus is still at large and the things might never be normal for those people who incurred significant losses.

Many people hope that the policy implemented by the government will help them get back to their feet once again.


Risks Factors for Coerced Sex Among Female Youth in Ghana

Risks Factors for Coerced Sex Among Female Youth in Ghana Image

High rates of coerced sex among female youth in Ghana remains a huge public health concern. 

Sexual victimization is recognized as a human right violation and also as the main threat to the wellness of females.

It’s experiences have adverse mental, physical, and behavioral consequences that have been reported by studies across the world.

The most common and well-recorded consequences of sexual victimization are the effects on adolescent female reproductive and sexual health, including  STIs and HIV infection, unwanted pregnancies, and pregnancy complications (miscarriage, stillbirth, and low birth weight).

Identifying the risk factors that contribute to coerced sex among female youth will help us prevent the consequences and long-lasting negative impact of sexual victimization.

The common risk factors include:

Relationship Status

An intimate relationship is one of the primary sexual coercion risk factors. According to research, coerced sex is perpetuated with known victims, particularly those partners in intimate relationships and not strangers. 

Various studies have linked characteristics like age, power, and socioeconomic differentials between partners as the factors increasing the risks of coerced sex in intimate relationships. However, there is no evidence suggesting that a romantic relationship can increase the risk of coerced sex.

 The prevalence of sexual victimization in women with a history of sexual activity or multiple partners is high. Though most research excludes inexperienced females, yet they’re also at risk of coerced sex.

But this is understandable because this exclusion might be attributed to school status. Many in-school females are at a lower risk of being coerced into sex than those out-of-school.

School enrolment, act as a powerful impediment to the formation of intimate relationships. Even though schools provide a suitable environment to meet males and form relationships.

Multiple studies show that enrolled females are less likely to get involved in sex or be in romantic relationships.

Family Structure and Process

Family structure and process may increase or decrease the female risk against coerced sex. This depends directly on the family relationship experience.

Many studies have focused on one aspect of the family process and that’s behavioral control. This aspect includes monitoring of female youths by parents or other adult family members.

Also, it includes house rules and how consistently the rules are being enforced. Research suggests that behavioral control and parental monitoring prevents sexual activity among U.S. adolescents.

In Ghana and other parts of sub-Saharan Africa, studies have found that monitoring by both parents and other family members has resulted in reduced risk of sexual activities among the youth.

Therefore, closely monitored female youths are less likely to get involved in romantic activities. Besides, if they do get involved, behavioral control might limit the opportunities of male partners to coerce them into having sex.

Societal Factors

Social factors such as male dominance promote gender inequalities, which consistently reinforces the male perception of violence against females.  This increases the risk of sexual victimization.

Tradition norms involving gender roles, the existence of a philosophy of male sexual entitlement, the social norm that supports sexual assault,  and weak legal sanction against sexual assault in African countries need to be addressed to prevent victimization.


Sex Workers in Africa Lack Food for Taking HIV Drugs During Coronavirus Outbreak

Sex Workers in Africa Lack Food for Taking HIV Drugs During Coronavirus Outbreak Image

Due to the outbreak of coronavirus, people of all the occupations and professions from across the world are affected. The pandemic has now become a global crisis and threatens in various ways. But specifically, the people of Africa are in the flames who work on the streets to earn their living. Many sex workers from Africa have reported that lockdown due to COIVID-19 has kept almost all of their customers away. So, they have less or even no money to buy the necessary food for their families. 

Mignonne Story

For example, 25 years old Mignonne says that when she doesn’t have food to eat, her HIV antiviral drugs cause weakness, pain, and even nausea. She added that, at times, she even passes out. Mignonne added in her interview that if I don’t take the drugs, I can quickly die.

The same is the case with all the other places in Africa. Unfortunately, Africa has the highest HIV rate as compared to the rest of the world. According to LSHTM research (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine), many African countries have excluded sex workers from there social protection programs due to the global pandemic crisis. It makes sex workers as the most marginalized and compromised group.

Even Rwanda is in Danger

Only Rwanda still stands out even in these conditions. The progress in controlling HIV in Rwanda is very praisable. Because it offers antiretroviral therapy to everyone totally free. The records show that the HIV prevalence in Rwanda has been kept at three percent for over a decade. As a result, new cases of HIV infected people are dropping.
But due to the current situation, the health experts have shown their concerns that this progress can drop drastically. Moreover, UNAID has also announced, there is a strong possibility of an HIV drug shortage for the next couple of months.

Official Concerns

A Kenyan coordinator, “Grace Kamau,” said in the webinar regarding sex workers that they are engaging in unsafe sex practices. Now we are not able to access and get the prevention tools and medication that we used to.

The National Association (Supports HIV infected people) coordinator Deborah Mukasekuru said that it is one of the most difficult times. She added the national association is trying to mobilize as much food as it can for the sex workers. But there are too many of them, and it is not possible to reach them all. At this crucial time, the government is not to be blamed because COVID-19 caught everyone unaware.


It is one of the most crucial and challenging times for all sex workers in the world. But Africa, due to its poverty, is at the red line. Critics say that if they do not die of the coronavirus, the hunger will kill them.


Senate Passes Sexual Harassment Bill In Nigeria

Nigerian Senate Passes Sexual Harassment Bill Image

One of the most significant and most traumatic factors that affect girls and young women disproportionally is undoubtedly sexual assault. But considering the environment and social impact of Nigeria, there is minimal information and facts regarding the subject. 

Statistics about Sexual Harassment in Nigeria

The Pan African Medical Journal study shows the following patterns and stats about the sexual assault in Nigeria.

  • 6.1 percent of males were recorded with the sexual assault cases
  • 93.9 percent of females are usually the victims of sexual assault which is clearly a majority
  • Most of the recorded cases occurred in the day
  • Most of the cases were recorded in the people with the age of fewer than 20 years and unmarried
  • 52 percent of the assailants were found to be known to victims
  • 48.5 percent of the cases happened at assailants’ office or house
  • The physical force was recorded in 29.6 percent of the cases and 31.1 percent of cases recorded with violence 

All of these stats and patterns are acquired by studying the 75 percent of the total cases.

Most Common Sexual Diseases in Nigeria

According to the scientific studies and researches, there are many STDs (Sexually Transmitted Diseases) in Nigeria, but the most common of them all are listed below:

  • Gonorrhea
  • Chlamydia
  • Trichomoniasis
  • Syphilis
  • HIV
  • Herpes

Nigerian Senate Passes Sexual Harassment Bill

Due to the above figure and facts and the increasing rate of STDs in Nigeria, the Nigerian senate has passed the sexual harassment bill to uphold the basic ethical structures, specifically in high schools and universities, because there were many lecturers found in the universities committing sexual harassment.
Now because of the newly passed bill, any person committing sexual harassment crime will be sent to jail for at least two years.
Ahmad Lawan, the senate president, said that the sexual harassment bill is landmark legislation because we want to protect and save the daughters of our nation from the predators. He added that our tertiary institutions must be safe and sound to provide the students with a protective environment, and this bill will ensure it.

There is also the other side of the picture where the students were found accusing teachers of sexual harassment: essentially blackmailing to get better grades. The bill also deals with such students by making sure that in such cases, the students will be suspended.

The bill was first introduced in 2016, but the lawmakers revisited it due to the increasing cases of sexual misconduct in 2018.

After the success of the sexual harassment legislation, the education authorities and universities announced that they would work and cooperate with the government. They said that to ensure the implementation of the law, they will deal with every case by a thorough investigation.

Nigerian students, especially girls, feel very hopeful because it will make things very easy to pursue their careers and to reach their goals.


How Can Sex Education in Africa Reduce the Spread of STDs?

How Can Sex Education in Africa Reduce the Spread of STDs? Image

Did you know that barely 34% of the younger population is familiar with HIV transmission and prevention? With over 68% of HIV cases living in the sub-Saharan African region, it’s important now more than ever to keep investing in sex education in African schools. 

Children have to be fully acquainted with the importance of avoiding STDs and AIDS-related diseases if they are to live a healthy life. 

The question is, why is sexual education such a crucial program for the younger generation in Africa? How is it going to change their lives? We’ve decided to analyze all the statistical research on sex education in Africa for reducing STDs. 

Sex Education in African Schools 

According to UNESCO, many girls in rural African communities have no idea why they are menstruating nor how they could lead safe and productive lives. 

When the Department of Basic Education in South Africa stated they would expand their Comprehensive Sexuality Education in 2019, plenty of young girls finally got the chance to learn about their bodies. They had the material and opportunities to get a glimpse of the grown-up world. 

However, there is more to this program than it meets the eye. Girls learned about the significance of consent, how their bodies belong to them, and a way to recognize inappropriate behavior that might endanger them sexually. 

Why Do Children in Africa Need Sex Education?

A huge number of children in this region, particularly in rural communities, receive little to no information about sex and relationship. Instead, they make a sudden transition from childhood to adulthood. 

Lack of education has left the younger population vulnerable to sexual exploitation and dangerous behaviors. 

As a result, they’ve been unable to cope with their sexuality or manage STDs, unintended pregnancies, and other health risks. Lack of information and inadequate knowledge has left a huge mark on the African population. 

In fact, over 3.5 million cases of syphilis, 15 million of chlamydia, 16 million gonorrhea, and 30 million of trichomoniasis are all registered in Africa, published the National Library of Medicine. 

How Can Sex Education Help?

The first STD management strategy always starts with knowledge. With the right skills, information, and coping mechanism, the younger population will learn to be fully responsible for their choices and help others live a healthier life. 

With programs such as these, children get to learn about consent, abuse, violence, how to respect values and human rights. Not only will this knowledge empower them, but it will also help them reduce the transmission of STDs and other diseases. 

It’s true that implementing such changes in African communities will be a difficult task. But, it is possible to change the cultural norms and create a healthier environment for the population to grow. 


Sexual Assault and Violence in Africa Is a Serious Problem for Women, Here Is Why

Sexual Assault and Violence in Africa Is a Serious Problem for Women, Here Is Why Image

Sexual assault and STIs are a serious public issue all across Africa. According to the National Library of Medicine, of all the women surveyed, 44% have been sexually assaulted. Some were abused by their relationship partner, while others by people they’ve never met before. 

However, this is not the first time women in Africa have been subjects to abuse. In 2005, 71% of women in Ethiopia and 50% in Tanzania reported being abused by their intimate partners. That’s a huge percentage of the female African population. 

The question is, how these experiences affect women? Does the abuse affect STI rates in the region? We’ve decided to analyze all the statistical research on sexual assaults and STIs and how it’s affecting women in Africa. 

The Impact of Sexual Assaults on Women in Africa

Sexual assaults in Africa goes by many forms, such as:

  • Forced marriage
  • Marital rape
  • Paid dowry for violence
  • Harassment
  • Forced abortion, pregnancy & sterilization
  • Human trafficking and prostitution

These kinds of traumatic experiences leave a lasting impact on women. In many cases, it exposes them to STIs and increases the risk of contracting HIV by 10%. Based on reports in Nigeria, 16% of young girls under 5 years old have contracted STIs after a sexual assault. 

The older women who’ve been assaulted multiple times have a tendency to switch numerous sex partners and are less interested in protecting themselves from STIs, explained the National Library of Medicine. They have a lower chance of using protection during intercourse and are at risk of developing ulcers and other STIs. 

The reason for that is fear. Women who’ve been abused by partners are more likely to be afraid to ask them to use contraception. This kind of behavior has affected STI and HIV rates in the region. As a results, the number of infected individuals has constantly been increasing. 

Why Is This Happening?

Experts believe it is rooted in the culture. Abusers usually perceive their act of violence as a method for solving family problems. They have either been exposed to violence or grew up in homes where violence was prevalent. 

Another reason is to establish dominance. Men demand respect and obedience, which is why they often result in violence as a means to establish control. 

In Africa, sexual violence is a highly widespread phenomenon. It’s embedded in their culture and is used as a method to intimidate the female population. Women in these kinds of societies tolerate a high amount of violence against them. 

The cultural norms put them in a submissive position where they feel inferior to their spouse or intimate partner. Simply put, women are undervalued, unappreciated, and disrespected. They are considered property. 

In a region that approves these crimes, and there is no responsibility taken for such actions, these crimes will only keep happening. 


STDs Rates Appear To Be Quietly Skyrocketing As Fewer People Get Tested And Treated During The Pandemic

STDs Rates Appear To Be Quietly Skyrocketing As Fewer People Get Tested And Treated During The Pandemic Image

Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) cause a greater health risk and economic burden to the masses. Millions of people are infected with this problem every year. In 1995, STDs were accounted for to be around 87 percent of all cases among the main ten illnesses in the USA.

Now, the years have passed, but not much change is there. The rates of STDs are quietly skyrocketing, especially during these challenging times of the pandemic. People are refraining themselves from going to hospitals for checkups due to the risk of infection. With this, very few people get tested and treated during corona times.

The STD Infection

When a person comes in contact with STDs, he/she starts feeling troubling changes in their bodies. It includes a burning sensation while peeing, painless, but firm rashes and sores on the skin. While some people are infected yet, they do not see any of these symptoms.

Whether people believe it or not, but most of the victims of Sexually Transmitted Diseases also suffer from diseases like syphilis, chlamydia, gonorrhea, etc. These people must go through screening to prevent them from spreading the infection, knowing or unknowingly to other people. 

People who are prone to developing an infection due to sexual contact or needle-sharing must go for checkups. They need a proper test for STDs and HIV. If they turn out to be positive, they must admit themselves to the health care center for proper treatment. If the treatment is left unchecked, it can lead to issues like infertility or even death. 

How Does It Spread?

STDs always spread from one person to another person through sexual intercourse. They spread mainly from anal and vaginal intercourse, and less from oral intercourse. Some other blood-borne pathogens like hepatitis B virus, Human T-cell lymphotropic virus type I, and HIV can spread through genes as well. 

Children usually inherit this infection from their parents and then have to live along with it for the whole life. Similarly, pregnant women with STDs can pass this infection to the infants while they are still in their womb, during the birth of the baby, or while breastfeeding.

The Corona Impact

These days the main issue is that most of the public health departments deal with the coronavirus treatment. They are not available to pay due attention to diseases like STDs and HIV. However, if not taken care of, the negligence poses greater risks to the sexual health of the larger audience. 

The rates of STD are increasing every day, and if the situation remains the same, we would have to deal with a big health issue and economic burden in the coming years. The issue deserves national attention.