The Director of Social Welfare in the Cape Coast Metropolis says the increasing rate of poverty in the fishing communities has led to a situation where children are engaging in prostitution.
Daniel Wallace's comment follows an increase in child prostitution in the region which has got the nation talking.
It is reported that girls in the metropolis offer sex for as low as GHC1.
“With high poverty levels, vulnerable households within the coastal fishing areas have resorted to illegalities such as fishing with chemical and light, as well as trafficking as a means of survival”, Mr Wallace said.
“They are hungry and are ready to do anything to survive” he added in an interview with The Mirror following a Press conference to mark World Day against Child Labour.
Children are forced into prostitution because of parental neglect, which exposes them to teenage pregnancy and Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs)
HIV remains a standing threat to them as the GHC1 can barely afford to pay their hospital bills even with the Nationa Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).
The stigma associated with teenage pregnancy makes abortion an unavoidable choice for most of the girls. Unsafe abortion takes a toll on both baby and mother. The mother either loses the baby or both die.
In some cases if the baby is aborted successfully, the mother may lose her womb.
The case might be worse if they give birth, their children may end up following their footsteps since there may not be enough money to cater for everyone in the household. This could become repetitive.
An anti-child labour and trafficking advocate, Nana Kweigya calls for alternate livelihood for the people in such communities to reduce poverty.