The First Lady of the republic of Malawi, Dr Getrude Muthalika, urged young people in Malawi to stay away from child marriages.
The First Lady made the remarks at this year’s national commemoration event of the International Youth Day that was held at Manica Ground in Balaka district. The First Lady stated that the practice of child marriage is detrimental to national development initiatives in Malawi.
“Child marriages should not be condoned in the country as it has so manynegative impacts to the society. Child marriage also contributes to overpopulation which has reached an intolerable level in Malawi.
Young people who marry at a tender age usually end up having three children by the time they reach 18. This prevents them from actively participating in the development of their communities.
At 14 years, marriage is not something to consider or even think about, you find girls at the age of 18 already have two or three children. We must change,” said the First Lady.
Among other things, various organizations showcased their activities in youth development. YONECO showcased how the institution manages to reach out to young people through various channels like SMS, WhatsApp, Webchat. The institution also displayed how the Toll free lines help young people by giving them information and counselling through tool free lines that deal with issues pertaining to GBV, SRHR, as well as Drug and Substance Abuse.
The proceedings at the function were captured and broadcast live on YONECO’s youth-focused radio station- YFM.
The event was commemorated under the theme; Youth Building Peace: The Role of the Youth in population, Health, Environment, Skills Development and Entrepreneurship. The IYD is commemorated on 12 August every year but Malawi opted to have a national commemoration event on 21 August, 2017