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Zimbabweans Stage Protests Over Tomana's 'Offensive' Child Marriage Remarks

  • Jonga Kandemiiri

Women’s rights groups marched in Harare on Tuesday to push for the immediate harmonisation of laws protecting the rights of the girl child and demanded that Attorney-General Johannes Tomana should retract his alleged uncouth remarks on early child marriages.

The organisations that included Roots, Girls Legacy, Tag-a-Life and Zimbabwe Women Lawyers’ Association later handed over a petition Vice President and Justice Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa's office urging the government to protect the rights of the girl child.

A similar march intended in Bindura and organised by the Institute for Young Women Development failed to take off after the police refused to clear it claiming that politicians wanted to hijack the event.

Roots director Beatrice Savadye said they went ahead with their march despite the police also not clearing them on the grounds that the Zimbabwe Republic Police is under-staffed.

“We ended up marching without the police clearance without any escort to the Ministry of Justice, where to our surprise there was riot (anti-riot police) waiting for us,” said Savadye.