SHUN GIRL-CHILD MARRIAGE, DEPUTY GOVERNOR URGES
By Chisom Okpala
Awka, Oct. 12, 2018 (MOI) Anambra State Deputy Governor, Dr Nkem Okeke, has tasked parents to provide quality education for their children so that they can become financially independent.
``We must give our girls the opportunity to be able to fend for themselves before marriage," he said.
He made the call during the International Girl-Child Day Celebration in Awka.
The Deputy Governor noted that early marriage could create problems for girls in the future.
According to him marrying off girls during their teenage years should not be tolerated, even as he promised that government will do the needful to eradicate the practice in the state.
Okeke made a call for more stakeholders to key into the campaign against early child marriage.
He stressed the need to embark on awareness campaign in rural communities to sensitise men, who force their young daughters into early marriages on the dangers inherent in the act.
Okeke commended the Anambra State Golden Girls, who recently won the 2018 Technovation World Challenge on their achievements and global recognition.
``The golden girls who made Anambra and Nigeria proud deserve appreciation. There are more of such golden girls in the state.
``What every child needs is proper education, an opportunity to excel and be able to compete globally.
``Be a champion in whatever you do,’’ he advised.
Speaking on the occasion, Catholic Bishop of Awka Diocese, Most Rev. Paulinus Ezeokafor said the event would encourage the girls to see themselves as unique people.
He enjoined them to always strive to achieve successes in their endeavours.
Dr Gloria Olisa, who represented the Anambra State Universal Basic Education Board (ASUBEB) Chairman, Nze Emeka Olisa pointed out the harmful effects of early marriage.
She expressed displeasure at parents, who force their female children to enter into early marriages, which endangered their future.
Olisa tasked young girls to be committed to their academic pursuits instead of entering into early marriages.
The Convener, Mrs Maryann Ekeh – Izuchukwu, who perceived girl-child marriage, as violation of human rights, which should be abolished, called for the enactment of laws against it.
``A girl child should be properly developed in order to raise morally and valuable family, that can contribute to societal growth and development,’’ she said.
One of the golden girls in her response said that Technovation programme was created to provide solution to some of the world’s problems using technology.
According to he, ability to produce a mobile application FD-Detector, used in detecting fake drugs, won gold medals for them at the 2018 Technovation World Challenge in the U.S.
The Golden girl, then, called for an avenue to impart their acquired knowledge to others.
``We want to make the world a global world for Technovation,’’ she said.
Presentation of the Girl-Child Ambassadorship to the Anambra five Golden Girls added glamour to the event.
The event attracted members of the
Girls’ Guild, Security Operatives, Youth Council of Nigeria and the general