Centre for Human Rights and Rehabilitation (CHHR) has embarked on a sensitisation campaign with local leaders from the area of Traditional Authority Liwonde in Machinga on child rights with special attention to girls to remain in school.
CHRR held a two day sensitisation meeting with the local leaders at Liwonde in Machinga where discussions centred on protection of girls from teen pregnancies and child marriages.
“The aim of the meeting was to sensitise chiefs in the area of Traditional Authority Liwonde on child rights,” Civic Education Coordinator for CHRR, Thandizo Mphwiyo said in an interview with the Malawi News Agency (Mana).
“However, our priority is to ensure that the traditional leaders are aware of rights of the child and that girls and boys should exercise right of choice, choosing when and who to marry,” said Mphwiyo.
Mphwiyo, therefore, asked traditional leaders to be exemplary and continue raising awareness on child rights in their communities to ensure children enjoy their rights and that parents should send their children to school.
“CHRR will help the traditional leaders to come up with by–laws that are conforming to the laws of Malawi to keep girls in school,” Mphwiyo assured.
CHRR is implementing the Yes I Do project in the area of Traditional Authority Liwonde upon realising that the area registers more cases of child marriages such that the intervention also attempts to have teen mothers go back to school.
“We will continue collaborating with the chiefs and sensitise them on child rights in particular,” added Mphwiyo.
CHRR Yes I Do Project Officer in Machinga, Stain Katuli asked the traditional leaders to also work closely with parents so that they could equally understand child rights and the importance of sending the girl child to school.
Katuli added that girls should be protected from teen pregnancies, noting that this would also help them live healthy life.
In his remarks, Village Headman Liwonde commended CHRR for implementing the Yes I Do project in Liwonde area, saying it would help in raising awareness on child rights and education in particular.Among other things, the meeting with chiefs discussed categories of human rights and the traditional leaders were encouraged to ensure child rights were being respected in their respective communities.
Source: Nyasa Times