14-year-old Kalomo girl’s impending marriage shocks Response Network

A-14-YEAR-OLD grade 4 school girl of Lonkwe village in chief Siachitema’s area is due to be married on August 10.
According to Response Network Community Education Programme (CEP) officer Elizabeth Choongo, who is in the area for community sensitisation works, the girl’s parents have allegedly started making preparations for a wedding ceremony.
“I am in Lonkwe, which is on Chuundu Road in Musebela area under chief Siachitema’s area and I have found that a 14-year-old girl, who is in her 4th grade, is about to be married-off by her parents. They have set the date as 10th August, please, help raise an alert so that we can save this girl,” Choongo pleaded.
She added that teenage pregnancies and marriages were rampant in the area, which greatly affects the lives of the girl child.
Choongo, who is also the coordinator for Hope, Opportunity, Participation, Empowerment (HOPE) programme, which focuses on early marriages, incest, gender based violence (GBV) and rape with the coordination of Support Centre for Survivors of Incest and Sexual Abuse (SMISO) under Norway’s Fredskorpset (FK), said the intended marriage of the girl had attracted attention as the girl’s father was the one making the marriage arrangements.
When contacted, Southern Province Police Commissioner Bonny Kapeso requested for details of the father and the girls and promised to dispatch a team of Zimba police officers to the area.

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