Women and girls’ rights advocacy organisation, Shamwari Yemwanasikana (SYS), has called on the government to tighten efforts to empower the girl child as more cases of teenagers dying during childbirth keep piling up.
In a statement, Shamwari Yemwanasikana said
the government is failing the girl child as the organization cannot continue to ignore the plight of the girl child and sensitize sexual exploitation
“It is disheartening that our efforts in ending child marriages have not yielded any results. Our lawmakers are failing our girls. We need to take action. The girl child must be emancipated now. We can not continue making noise without seeing any results. We will not keep quiet until the girl child is emancipated from marriages,” said SYS.
This comes after another case of a 15-year-old who died during childbirth after having bled excessively whilst under the care of a faith healer. The perpetrator was charged with sexual intercourse with a minor.
“After public outcry after the death of Anna Machaya during childbirth at a church shrine, we hoped our collective efforts would influence policy change when it comes to our laws that prohibit child marriages and the implementation of laws that protect girls from child marriages,” said SYS.
SYS highlighted that Zimbabwe ratified international instruments on ending child marriages, a national policy on ending child marriages that should be implemented, and a Domestic Violence Act that is not being implemented.
“Child marriages are a menace to society and the lives of girls. Child Marriages must end now. The Marriage Bill must be passed into law as a matter of urgency. We cannot continue fighting over and over without yielding any results. We are moving towards ending violence against women and girls by 2030 therefore we need to start now,” said SYS.