LILONGWE-(MaraviPost)- The visiting ActionAid International Board Chairperson Nyaradzayi Gumbonzvanda on Thursday, commended Malawi for its effort on its ending child marriage campaign.
Gumbonzvanda observed that Malawi has set a record of excellence in fighting the vice through a vibrant legal framework coupled with chiefs’ involvement.
The ActionAid International board chairperson, who is also the African Union Goodwill Ambassador for “Ending Child Marriage,” told The Maravi Post upon her arrival in in Malawi at Kamuzu International Airport (KIA) in Lilongwe.
Gumbonzvanda is in Malawi for a three-day visit, which among other assignments, is to meet Government, some civil society, communities that are working with ActionAid Malawi, which is an affiliate to the Federation of ActionAid International.
“Malawi has set an excellent record on how to end child marriage in Africa. I am told it has worked due to the robust legal framework and with the engagement of local chiefs in the campaign.
“I am here to learn more on the strategy on how to end the vice in the entire continent. I feel pity when little girls go through early marriages instead of concentrating on education,” said Gumbonzvanda.
In her welcoming remarks, Chimwemwe Banda, Chief Director in the Ministry of Gender, expressed gratitude for Gumbonzvanda’ visit, which signifies Government’s efforts in ending the child marriage.
Banda assured Goodwill Ambassador Gumbonzvanda that Malawi will not relent on the matter until all girls are protected and sent back to school.
Gumbonzvanda is also scheduled to have an audience with President Peter Mutharika m. Later she will host a high-level panel discussion on critical areas affecting the girl child education.
The panel discussion is slated for Friday evening; it is expected that the United Nations Representative, Minister of Gender, Chairperson of Parliamentary Women Caucus, CSOs, Senior Chief Kachindamoto, and a girl from one of the girls’ fora, will attend.
Ambassador Gumbonzvanda, a human rights lawyer and current Chief Executive for Rozaria Memorial Trust, has extensive experience of work around adolescent health and HIV, women’s rights especially violence against women and property. She has been instrumental on work around women, peace and security in the Africa region. She is renowned for her advocacy work at the continental level on the African Protocol on Women’s rights and campaign to end child marriages.