Authorities in Machinga have expressed worry with the increase of teen pregnancies in the district which has hit a 2,336 mark from January to July, 2020.
According to Machinga District Commissioner (DC), Rosemary Nawasha, the development was worrisome considering that during the same period last year, the district only registered 169 teen pregnancies.
She said the closure of schools has contributed to the alarming figures of teen pregnancies as most children remain idle at home.
“We have collected this data from our health centres in the district. The figure could go up because some don’t patronize our district hospital and health centres,” the DC said.
Nawasha encouraged all partners in the fight against early marriages to step up efforts to arrest the situation.
She disclosed that the District has registered 969 child marriages from January to July 2020.
“In 2019, during the same period, the district registered 115 child marriages,” Nawasha said.
Machinga District Council, last Friday rolled out a door-to-door campaign to households who have entertained child marriages in all traditional leaders as it attempts to bring to end the vice in the district.
The Team consisting of Traditional Leaders, Police, Council officials, Judiciary, Mother groups, Community victim support unit members, Child protection workers and Community development team have since managed to bring to an end some child marriages in the district.
Nawasha has warned that the Council would not spare anyone involved in the malpractice regardless of their position in the society in ensuring that all perpetrators face the law.