Police probe suspected child marriage case

Source: Police probe suspected child marriage case | The Herald 29 AUG, 2019

Police probe suspected child marriage caseAssistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi

Crime Reporter
The Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) has launched investigations into a case where an alleged Johanne Marange Apostolic Sect member, whose pictures have gone viral on social media, is said to have married a 15-year-old girl.

The pictures show the man, who is believed to be 69-years-old, embracing the under-age girl and also carrying her in his arm.

In a statement, national police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi appealed for information to assist in carrying out investigations into the case.

“Police are appealing for information pertaining to pictures circulating on social media where a man is seen holding a girl,” he said. “It is being alleged that the man is aged 69, while the girl is aged 15, and they are married.

“Anyone with information pertaining to the marriage may report to their nearest police station for investigations to be instituted.”

Several people have reacted angrily to the pictures and asked the police to crackdown on the man and conduct investigations.

Cabinet recently approved the draft Marriages Bill which consolidates marriage laws and above all criminalises child marriages, as Government’s first step in ending those unions.

Child marriages have been a huge challenge in Zimbabwe, and Government pledged to eliminate them by 2030, in line with target 5.3 of the Sustainable Development Goals.

In many developing countries, child marriages are attributed to poverty, gender discrimination and lack of education and peer pressure.