Increased Child Marriages And Teenage Pregnancies Blamed On Parenting
Parenting is thought to be contributing to rise in child marriages and teenage pregnancies in Mchinji district.
There are reports suggesting that failure by most parents to take care of their children is what is leading to increased forced marriages now placed at 22 percent.
Women Action Groups have since joined organizations to eliminate the problem through monitoring and documenting of such cases for action.
Programs and Communications Officer for Journalists Association Against Aids (JournalAids), Dingani Mithi, said most parents particularly in the rural areas continue to force children into marriage, despite messages condemning the vice.
He explained that in Mchinji, for example, some parents have a tendency of shielding perpetrators or victims even when the cases have been brought to police or courts.
“Some parents go to the extent of going to court demanding that the judiciary should discontinue cases, a tendency which denies justice to our girls,” said Mithi adding, “the malpractice is increasing teenage pregnancies and child marriages”.
JournalAids has thus planned sensitization and awareness meetings with parents in the district to help bring about change and reverse the situation.
Mithi also claims that JournaliAids is providing soft loans to 200 adolescent girls to help them become economically empowered and avoid child marriages.