President of Tanzania John Magufuli on Thursday said girls who got pregnant should stay away from school even after giving birth. He said by getting pregnant they had chosen parenting over schooling and thus they should stay home and cater for their children. Speaking at a public rally in Chalinze town, about 100km west of the capital, Dar es Salaam, the president added that men who impregnate the girls should also be given jail terms so that they can put their energies to good use while serving time. Click here to read the full news report
In a joint statement, on all Africa news, 29 women's groups said that any move to deny girls the opportunity to go back to school after giving birth would only punish them, their children - and the nation.
Taking away young girls education will have detrimental impact not only on the vulnerable girls, but on their children and the entire country. Calculations show that for each additional year of schooling, a girl in a low-income country will increase her future income by 10−20 per cent (Hanushek, EA et al., 2011). Access to education promotes health, has the potential to reduce poverty, reduces risk of violence, abuse, child marriage and HIV. Basic education empowers young girls, enables them to make better life choices and the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women establish it as a basic human right.