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Mombasa Women Leader Puts Girls First

Mombasa county Woman Representative Asha Hussein says girl child education and women empowerment would be her priority.

Asha promised to give the education sector a priority noting that it was crucial to alleviating poverty.

The legislator said that girl-child education and economic empowerment of women would reduce the number of abuses the womenfolk face like sexual and domestic violence.

She said empowering women would also in the long run help the country realise meaningful development in the economic sphere.

The women rep was speaking on Sunday at Uwanja Wa Mbuzi Football Stadium in Kisauni sub county during celebrations to mark the International Day of the Girl Child.

This year the International Day of the Girl Child was celebrated around the globe under the theme: Keeping the promises made to girls in Beijing in 1995.

During the celebrations girls and some disabled lot drawn from Mombasa, Kwale and Kilifi counties converged at the sports ground to participate in a football tournament organised by Coast Education Centre.

Asha also said she will team up with other women leaders to push and ensure that sanitary pads issuance which is now domiciled in the ministry of education shifts back to the Gender Ministry.

The first term female MP expressed concern that the education ministry has failed to distribute the towels to girls outside the education system or those who drop out of school for one reason or the other.

The women representatives have in the last two years controlled the distribution under the National Government Affirmative Action Fund when it was previously domiciled in the Gender ministry.

Mombasa Women Rep Asha Mohamed (left) chats with a disabled girl who received a wheelchair during celebrations to mark the International Day of the Girl Child.

Coast Education Centre (COEC) Executive Director Halima Mohamed said her organisation will focus on mentoring the girl child and empowerment of women to enable them contribute to the socio-economic development of the country.

Ms Mohamed decried societal discrimination in education against pregnant girls and young mothers.

She said as schools reopen after a long break occasioned by Covid-19, a significant number of female learners were likely to miss school due to pregnancy issues.

She said the country has experienced high adolescent pregnancy rate as a result of the Covid-19 crisis but insisted that all girls have a right to education regardless of their pregnancy.

“We want pregnant girls to continue with their education when learning resumes in school,” she said.

On her part the Coast Association for Persons with Disability (CPWD) Chief Executive Officer Hamisa Zaja called on the society to discard all discriminatory practices that deny girls the enjoyment of their right to education.

She said education of the gild-child should not be seen as a privilege that can be withdrawn arbitrarily.

After the tournament the girls received several free items including sanitary pads, soaps, toothbrushes, pastes and pants.

Those who were disabled also received wheelchairs and white canes.

By Hussein Abdullahi

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