The United Nations in Zimbabwe has issued a statement on the death of Memory Machaya, a 14-year-old pregnant girl, during childbirth at a church shrine in Marange, Manicaland. Memory reportedly died around 9 AM on 15 July and was secretly buried two hours later. Reports suggest that Memory, the last born child in a family of six, was forced out of school while doing Form One in Mhondoro to get married to Momberume. She died while giving birth to her firstborn baby boy who is said to be in the custody of his father. Pindula News present the statement by the UN.
UNITED NATIONS ZIMBABWE
United Nations Statement on the death of Memory Machaya, a 14-year-old pregnant adolescent girl during childbirth
The United Nations in Zimbabwe notes with deep concern and condemns strongly the surrounding circumstances leading to the untimely death of 14-year-old Memory Machaya from Marange, who died while giving birth at an apostolic sect shrine.
Sadly, disturbing reports of the sexual violation of under-aged girls, including early forced child marriages continue to surface and indeed this is another sad case. A situation where one out of three girls in Zimbabwe will be married before the age of 18 years is also not acceptable.
The current trend of unresolved cases of violence against women and girls in Zimbabwe, including marriages of minors cannot continue with impunity. All forms of violence and early forced marriages severely affect the mental and physical health of girls and is a violation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child which Zimbabwe is a signatory. The United Nations welcomes the investigations announced by the Zimbabwe Republic Police and the Zimbabwe Gender Commission into the death of Memory Machaya and look forward to the perpetrators being brought to justice.
Efforts by the Government, civil society and faith-based organizations and development partners, including the Spotlight Initiative, a partnership between the UN and the European Union must be strengthened to end violence against women and girls. We call on the Government of Zimbabwe to fast track the adoption of the Marriage Bill, which recognizes child marriage as a crime and to intensify the roll out the National Action Plan on Ending Child Marriage.
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7th August, 2021 Media Contact:
Ruvimbo Mushavi I Communications Officer I United Nations Zimbabwe Resident Coordinator’s Office I Email: email@example.com I Mobile: +263-773-205-100
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