First Lady Monica Chakwera has encouraged girls in the country to defeat challenges they face in their day-to-day lives and attain education.
She was speaking on Friday in Traditional Authority Chitekwere in Lilongwe as part of commemorating International Day of the Girl Child.
Chakwera said she understands the aggravated challenges that girls face but encouraged them to go against all odds and complete education.
She bemoaned the increase in child marriages and teenage pregnancies, stressing that, if not checked, it would ruin the girls’ future.
“We should not allow some ill traditions to destroy girls’ future. We need to practise cultures that will push the girl child to complete her education. We have to encourage those that have children already to return to school,” she said.
The First Lady added that though the emergence of Covid-19 has posed a lot of challenges, it was possible to protect the interests of the girl child.
Minister of Gender, Community Development and Social Welfare Patricia Kaliati said government will see to it that child marriages are terminated and victims return to school.
Director of Programmes at World Vision Malawi Charles Chimombo said it is sad that many girls end up getting teenage pregnancies, hence their commitment to supporting government and communities to empower the girl child.
“In our strategy, we have put up advocacy and child protection as one of our focus areas. We are working with parents, children and ambassadors to help and rally behind girls so that we protect our girls,” he said.
The International Day of Girl Child is commemorated on October 11 each year.