MCHINJI – The YOUTH NETWORKING AND COUNSELLING of MALAWI has accused parents in the central district of MCHINJI of promoting early child marriages and unplanned pregnancies.

The girl child needs protection so as to complete school (Pic. Agencies)

The group has launched a campaign after realising a number of children are failing to access information on their Sexual Reproductive Health Rights due to parental resistance.

The program, with the theme: Marriage No Child’s Play, aims to bring awareness among children, especially girls, and their parents against such attitudes.

Project Officer TIONGE BANDA says the bulk of parents in MCHINJI are holding their kids from schemes that help prevent practices likely to lead to early and unplanned pregnancies.

He has addressed delegates to a meeting held at MKUMBA Primary School Grounds in Traditional Authority ZULU, saying the same parents are also victims of some outdated cultural and religious beliefs.

Mr BANDA says the YOUTH NETWORKING AND COUNSELLING would like to improve youth access to reproductive health information through the project, which receives funding from the SIMAVI group of NETHERLANDS.

He says the major aim is to raise awareness on Sexual Reproductive Health Rights among young people, as well as strengthen child protection system by engaging key stakeholders.

MBC News says Village Headman MKUMBA has commended the initiative, saying it will help communities come up with holistic measures for the safety of young children.

He says it is also the duty of local leaders to ensure young people in their areas know their Sexual Reproductive Health Rights, to reduce early and unplanned pregnancies – including child marriages.

Two victims of child marriages (Pic. Human Rights Watch) The 14-year-old girl in the picture is holding her baby at her sister’s home in Kanduku Village in Mwanza District of Malawi. She married in September 2013, but her husband chased her away. Her 15-year-old sister, in the background, married when she was 12. Both sisters said they married to escape poverty. Source: Human Rights Watch 2014

Given the gravity of the problem, the YOUTH NETWORKING AND COUNSELLING meeting has attracted traditional and religious leaders, as well as parents and young children.

A recent report by the UNITED NATIONS says child marriages are on the increase in MCHINJI District, and the world body predicts as much as 50 percent of children in MALAWI will have been married prematurely./Sabanews/cam



WINDHOEK – An instructor with the NAMIBIA Airforce School of Airpower Studies has successfully developed and introduced a locally manufactured computer into the market.

Information Technology helps improve education (Pic. OER Africa)

NBC News says the National Assembly has welcomed this FIRST ever locally assembled machine built on what is known as the Psychology Experiment Building Language, PEBL.

Designers say PEBL is a free psychology software for creating experiments that allows you to design your own experiments or use ready-made ones, and lets you exchange experiments freely without license or charge.

NBC News says VINCENT VAN WYK, a Chief Instructor at the NAMIBIAN Air Force School of Air-power Studies, started the PEBL project in 2015 and released it onto the local market ONE year later.

It says ruling SWAPO Parliamentarian PENDUKENI IIVULA-ITHANA has presented the computer in the National Assembly, describing it as a high tech central processing unit developed for all IT-related needs.

The national broadcaster also says the low-cost high tech computer will help ensure all NAMIBIAN children have access to ICT facilities, even in rural communities.

It says Information and Communication Technology Minister STANLEY SIMAATA has called on government departments to use the locally manufactured computer in their executive services.

He says the Public Procurement Act demands special treatment of domestic products, but some State institutions still import tools that are available locally.

Prime Minister SAARA KUUGONGELWA-AMADHILA has also added her voice to the call for use of locally made products.

She says the government has a policy that specifically directs the support to such goods, while developing their capacity to market them regionally and internationally.

The authorities in NAMIBIA have now developed a national plan to open a processing plant next year to enable local production of the PEBL based computer./Sabanews/cam



JOHANNESBURG – The SADC Region continues to run program aimed to bring awareness about malaria, ONE of the biggest killer disease in Sub-SAHARAN AFRICA.

The female mosquito, a silent killer (Image Agencies)

The 16-member economic bloc commemorates the SADC Malaria Day on SIX NOVEMBER each year in a bid to reduce infections by the life-threatening disease.

SABC News says the SADC Malaria Day, according to the SOUTH AFRICAN Government website, aims to mobilise communities to take part in anti-malaria campaign programs.

The authorities expect the activities to help people recognise signs and symptoms of malaria, provide more home-based treatment, or seek treatment when ill, and use personal protective measure.

The WHO says malaria is a life-threatening illness caused by parasites that are transmitted to people through the bites of infected female mosquitoes.

It says the about THREE-POINT-TWO-BILLION, almost HALF the world population, are at risk of malaria.

Young children, pregnant women, and non-immune travellers from malaria-free areas are particularly vulnerable to the disease when they become infected.

However, malaria is preventable and curable, and increased efforts are dramatically reducing the malaria burden in many places.

The World Health Organisation says Sub-SAHARAN AFRICA carries a high share of the global malaria burden; and in 2015, the region recorded 89 percent of malaria cases and 91 percent of malaria deaths./Sabanews/cam