Tatenda Chisamba popularly known as Trice with his “Born to Shine” artists crew decided to say a few pregnant words on the burning issue of Child Marriage. Featuring his Born to Shine group members namely, Donvert Snipet, Tina Holdings, Faffie, Zim Darling and Rocki Vee, they came up with the track titled “Fight Against Child Marriages.”
The Born to Shine group aimed at airing out their views on how Child Marriages are destroying the future of children at the expense of feeding the family.
“Zvinondidzimba moyo, (it pains my heart)
kuona ane wakewo mwana, (seeing a child with her own child)
Kuroodza mwana nekuti mumba hamuna upfu (marrying off her child because there is no mealie meal in the house
Shuwiro yake yeramangwana
Ichazadziswa naniko (who will fulfill her plans for the future)…”
It is highly commendable that this group took a huge step towards the eradication of this social ill. The act goes way back into history, where the girl child has always been regarded as an investment through which the family can get returns in the long run. In the Shona community there was or is a popular idea known as ‘Kuzvarira’. Here a couple somehow marries off their young child even after birth to a family friend. In most cases this was/is done in settling a creditors account who could not repay what he/she owed the second party. Now, the child grew/grows already married but in the process of growth she developed/develops ambitions and desires for the future but there is a set trap to cut these off in an instant. This is a planned marriage agreed upon without her own consent but because she was/is a child and a woman she was/is expected to be submissive and follow this old husband home.
With kind of situation, be it that we had a future lawyer in this girl who has been turned into a wife or let us rather say a breeder without reaching college. Automatically, a future has been broken, like it is noted in the track where the lyrics say; “changoswera chete kuberekeswa vana” (what’s left of her is being made to give more and more children).
There is more to these girls whom our parents are sending off to marriage because of hunger. They say desperate measures for desperate situations and at the end of the day our sisters suffer. Their future is then discounted and their marital value accounted and therefore put up as an offer to anyone with enough resources to feed the family. In all this, the girl is made to believe that she is doing it for her family but she’s sacrificing her future.
Lest we forget, there is also the other calibre that has always been labelled “sugar daddies” who have taken not to marry these girls but rather waste the future of the girl child. With their abundant resources they sweet talk young girls into sexual relationships. With their craving for goodies the young girls pull down their skirts and unbutton their blouses only to be later pregnant or contaminated with Sexually Transmitted Diseases.
What use would it be if we just point out these bad habits just in passing? It will be nothing more than just making noise in a street chapel. We need to start advocating for the preservation of the girl child’s dream by allowing her lifetime opportunities. Marriage is not a predetermined destiny but a choice. Just like our Born to Shine advocates stated; “let us give them a chance to go and make their own decisions.” We never know, there might be so much talent that was flushed down the drain after premature marriage. Child marriage has a lot of disadvantages which include loss of focus, divided attention and so forth. With these mentioned two effects it becomes difficult on a normal basis to pursue a successful academic career when you have kids demanding your full attention.
Ergo, the call still remains for all able parties to help fight for the girl child and her pricey future. She deserves more than a husband and a long line of kids, as it is often said “there is more to life.”