Education Standards Officer [ESO] General Inspector Keith Inambao who disclosed this during the first stakeholders meeting on Gender in Development held in the Council chamber in Kalabo yesterday described the situation as very serious.
He called for serious interventions into the matter for the betterment of the girl child’s future.
Inspector Inambao said that the affected pupils did not write their final examinations due to pregnancies and the practice of compelling them into early marriages.
He said that in the year 2009 more than five hundred  Grade Seven pupils did not write their final examinations because of pregnancies and early marriages.
He said that Kalabo was the most hit district in Western Province if not in the entire country due to the same problems.
Inspector Inambao noted that efforts to report such cases to Police failed because parents of the affected pupils protected their children saying they were grown up.
The Education Standards Officer further said this was bringing the passing rate of grade seven pupils down in Kalabo district.
He added that the parents of the affected pupils merely focused on the short term benefit of dowry at the expense of their children’s future.
[ ZANIS ]