ZIMBABWE. Harare. Sunningdale constituency junior parliament member Mitchel Chirombe has urged young girls to make noise against any form of injustice that may shatter their future. This year marks the ninth anniversary of the International Day of the Girl Child celebration.
In an interview with Transcontinental Times, Chirombe (15) said she is hurt by the violation of children’s rights especially girls. “The girl child has long been a fallen victim of abuse and violence. Now l say to the girl child, never be silent. Make noise in that suffocation. Make known your protests to the service providers. Do not hide your pain and endure it alone,” she said.
Some children are not aware of their rights
The constitution of Zimbabwe enshrines the rights of children, but some are not enjoying the freedoms due to social injustices. Most children suffer in silence because they have no idea where to report crimes. Some in rural areas are not aware of their rights because they have never heard of them.
The need for police and community intervention
Chirombe said communities need to create an environment where girls can report injustices. “Communities can create a friendly environment by reporting all forms of abuse to the police victim friendly unit. So it is my call to Zimbabwe Republic Police and the community at large to intervene and save us,” she explained.
Effects of COVID-19 on young girls
Some girls end up involved in drugs and prostitution believing that they can overcome the injustices and pressure. Additionally, COVID-19 has affected some girls who became pregnant during the lockdown period.
Chirombe said she witnessed a number of young girl pregnancies, especially in Mashonaland Central Province, during the lockdown period.
However, she encouraged her peers to be persistent so that they can achieve their goals. “Make your vision your reality. Equip yourself and use your hands and minds to build your future. Dream big, talk less, and act vehemently as persistence tears away resilience. Now is the time to rise, girl child,” she emphasized.
UN concerns over young girls
In 2011 the United Nations adopted the International Day of the Girl Child, aiming to address challenges faced by young girls everywhere.
This year, celebrations are focusing on demands to live free from gender-based violence, learning new skills relevant to the futures they choose, and leadership as a generation of activists accelerating social change.