Early Marriages

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Girls in South Rift Married Off then Taken to School

At the crack of dawn, Doreen (not her real name) wakes up, prepares breakfast for her family, dashes to the bathroom to shower before dressing up ready to start her journey to a day secondary school some two kilometres away.

He said chiefs and their assistants had been directed to closely work with education officers, teachers, police, Nyumba Kumi committee members, elders and the clergy in cracking down on the offenders.

Most of the offenders, it has emerged, are boda-boda riders, traders and farmers, many of whom dropped out of school for various reasons.

Narok branch Kenya Union of Post-Primary Education Teachers (Kuppet) secretary Charles Ng'eno said special attention should be given to education of girls in the region as there is a high dropout rate related to outdated cultural practices.

"Apart from enforcing the Children's Act, there is a need to sensitise members of the local communities on the benefits of educating their children, the health hazards posed to girls by female genital mutilation, early marriages and pregnancies which could lead to death," said Mr Ng'eno.

The teenage wife leaves her husband, a shopkeeper, at home as she braves the Monday morning chill, joining a file of other students trekking to school in Chebunyo, Chepalungu Constituency, in Bomet County.

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Timothy Omondi