Stop marrying off young girls - Mbambo

13 November 2018 | Social Issues

Kavango governor Samuel Mbambo says parents who marry off their daughters at a young age are not only compromising their health, but also risking their lives.

Mbambo said he is aware of parents marrying off their daughters because of poverty, but warned the consequences can be deadly.

“When you look at child marriages, there are repercussions when a girl gets married early; one of them is that her health is compromised, not only in terms of the likelihood of her being infected with HIV or other sexually transmitted diseases, but she could die in childbirth, as her body is not yet ready to go through the trauma of giving birth,” Mbambo said yesterday at Rundu, at the official opening of a gender ministry workshop on women's empowerment.

Mbambo called on parents to be patient and wait for their daughters to acquire the necessary education and become responsible citizens, who can become independent women and give back to their families, instead of being imposed on a stranger at a vulnerable age.

“I am aware that there are reasons which some parents think are genuine, like poverty and feeling compelled to marry off their daughters, but we need to know that if we wait just a few years, this child would complete her education and be in a better position to help the family,” Mbambo said.

The governor said he was also concerned about the increasing trend of people using violence to settle disputes, saying they should use alternative ways to resolve their issues.





“As for gender-based violence (GBV), it is sad when society thinks that the way out of disagreements is fighting, emotional torture or murdering someone. We need to learn to find alternative ways to resolve our differences,” Mbambo said.

“Further, I believe that if we get back to our roots, where we lived knowing and taking responsibility for the growth, safety and security of every individual in the community, we will have no more GBV incidences.”

KENYA KAMBOWE

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