This story shows that Africa is moving sometimes in the right direction. And it is good news for those working in the fields of HIV, AIDS and human rights.
Congratulations Swaziland, for your courage in banning a tradition that has been in your culture for centuries. Now the real challenge begins… enforcing the law.
The marriage of an adult man to an underage girl is known as kwendizisa in Siswati.
“Swazi men marrying girls once the girls enter puberty is not a customary law. It is not mandatory. It is tolerated because it has always been done. But times are changing, and Swaziland has the highest HIV prevalence rate in the world. This practice has added to the spread of HIV. It is a great victory for public health and for the rights of girl children that this outmoded practice must now end,” AIDS activist Sandra Kunene told IRIN/PlusNews.
Deputy Prime Minister Themba Masuku announced the government’s intention to enforce the Child Protection and Welfare Act by prosecuting men who marry underage girls.
Sexual activity with underage girls…
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