Kenya: Girl Seeks Help Over Forced Marriage

A 14-year-old girl Pili Mamyiai Kalea who escaped being married off while in standard six at Macknnon in Kinango wants well-wishers to help her.

Kalea is said to have ran away from her home and hid at Nyango area three years ago after learning that her parents were planning to marry her off.

She was taken to Nyango Primary School by good Samaritans where she completed her primary education this year and 235 marks in KCPE exams.

The school’s chairman Jeremia Laibai said they hid Kalea for the three years to enable her complete her primary education and join secondary school.

“Her father has already received dowry from his friend promising to marry her daughter off. She went back home after completing standard eight and was told not to go for the exam results because she was going to be married off. She ran away again and seeking assistance of the county government,” he told residents in a meeting held at Nyango on Wednesday.

Kalea is supposed to join Mwakijembe Secondary School. Area ward representative has promised to take up the matter and ensure the girl goes to a girls’ school where she can be secure.

Deputy Governor Fatuma Achani said it is wrong for parents to marry off their daughters yet the county government has set aside Sh100 million for education.

Nyango primary school head teacher,Paul Rongit said that parent of the minor received dowry three years ago and have refused to return them until they marry off their daughter who has so far escaped from her home. “We tried our best to protect her and she is done with primary school education,” he said.

Kwale leaders urged locals living in the area to stop the culture of marrying off their daughters and instead to educate them.

Kwale governor Salim Mvurya,deputy governor Fatuma Achani and MCA James Dawa and stressed the important of educating girl children in the society.

The three said that it is high time that locals in the area should start taking their children to school because the government is supporting them.

Deputy governor Fatuma Achani said that it is unfair for parents in the area to marry off their daughter while the county government has set aside Sh100 millions to sponsor education in the area.

She said that early marriage is also against the law and the right of girl children and that whoever will be found marrying of his daughter will be arrested.

“Those daughters of yours are the doctors, pilots and engineers for their county in some years to come we have to protect them by all means.

Dawa said there is no reason for parents to fail taking their children to secondary schools because every ward has been allocated Sh5 millions to cater for education.

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