Zimbabwean Minister Calls for Harsher Penalties for Predators
In response to rising teenage pregnancies in Zimbabwe, Information and Publicity Minister Monica Mutsvangwa has called for harsher penalties for those responsible, stating that predators and abusers should be castrated. This comes after Ruth Labode, a Parliamentary Portfolio Committee chairperson, raised concerns about the government’s policies to address the issue.
Labode expressed sadness at the statistic that “700 young girls aged 10 to 14” had become pregnant, saying, “what has gone wrong with our people?”
Shocking Statistics of Child Pregnancies in Zimbabwe
According to the Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency, 700 girls aged 10 to 14 gave birth in 2022. The Family Aids Caring Trust has also reported a surge in child pregnancies between 2021 and 2022, with over 20,000 pupils dropping out of school after falling pregnant.
Mutsvangwa Calls for Stiffer Penalties
According to a local publication, Mutsvangwa believes that stiffer penalties are necessary to deter men from engaging in se.x.ual activity with underage girls. She stated that she would be taking the matter up with her colleagues and that “penalties should be quite high.”
The Responsibility of All Adults to Protect Children
This shocking statistic highlights the urgent need for action to protect Zimbabwe’s children from harm. As Mutsvangwa has pointed out, “a 10-year-old is a baby” and it is the responsibility of all adults to ensure their safety and well-being. Hopefully, with the government taking a more proactive stance, more measures will be put in place to prevent child pregnancies and protect young girls.
Mutsvangwa Calls for Unity Against “Evil”
Mutsvangwa has called for unity among leaders and parents to fight against this “evil.” She believes that all Zimbabweans need to work together to address this issue.
In the words of Mutsvangwa, “it is about all of us as leaders in the areas where we live. It is also about us as parents to work together, united as Zimbabweans to fight against this evil.”
The Zimbabwean government has taken a bold stance against the rise of child pregnancies in the country, with Mutsvangwa calling for castration of paedophiles and stiffer penalties. The responsibility to protect children falls on all adults, and hopefully, with a united effort, more measures will be put in place to prevent child pregnancies and protect young girls.