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‘NGOs must engage MPs’

ARTHUR MWANSA, Lusaka
THE Committee on Legal Affairs, Governance, Human Rights, Gender Matters and Child Affairs (CLAGHRGMCA) has asked non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to ensure members of Parliament (MPs) are engaged in all planning activities when drafting child marriage laws in Zambia.
Kabwe Central MP James Kapyanga said this recently when law makers made their presentation to the national follow-up workshop on child marriage laws in Zambia.
Mr Kapyana said “MPs can also get involved in the fight on ending child marriages, especially in the drafting and discussions of the draft laws instead of waiting for these draft pieces of legislation to come to Parliament”.
He also said child marriage hinders the development of a child as it does not allow them to explore their full potential.
“Since this fight against child marriage is already under way and is being championed by the Ministry of Gender and Child Development with other co-operating partners, it is our earnest appeal that MPs should be included in all planned activities,” Mr Kapyanga said.
He said MPs are prepared to work with traditional leader in the constituencies in addressing child marriage.
“We are ready to use the platform accorded to us as elected representatives in Parliament to debate on matters related to the welfare of children and ending child marriage.
This vice is a scourge, a curse, a tormentor, we have to eliminate at all costs and since we have a very unique advantage of being elected representatives of the people, we have to use this opportunity to change this phenomenon.”
The MPs are also ready to work with school authorities in the constituencies to sensitise young ones on the dangers of child marriages.