Government and Plan International say there is need to formulate laws that impose stiff punishment on men that impregnate young girls.
The matter was among issues that Minister of Education, Science and Technology Bright Msaka and Plan International chief executive officer Anne-Birgitte Albrectsen discussed during their breakfast meeting in Lilongwe yesterday.
Albrectsen is visiting the country to learn more on how Malawi is fairing in the promotion of girls’ rights, her organisation’s key area of focus.
In an interview after the meeting, Msaka said they noted that despite various interventions, many girls still fall prey to early pregnancies, a major cause of high school dropout rate among girls.
He said to stop this, the meeting proposed the need to come up with laws that punish men who impregnate young girls.
Said Msaka: “We believe that if men are punished it could help to stop early pregnancies among girls. In collaboration with Plan, we will see how we can work this out.”
On her part, Albrectsen said she was impressed with government policies aimed at protecting girls’ rights.
She said: “What we want is to help the government of Malawi implement the policies that promote the girl child in areas of health and education.”
Some of the policies she highlighted were the re-admission of girls into school after giving birth and inclusive education, which ensure that boys, girls and children with disabilities enroll in schools.