A press conference to this effect took place yesterday in Yaounde.
The African Union, UNICEF and the confederation of African football under the Powerplay initiative have partnered together to fight against the marriage of young girls. Speaking in a press conference yesterday at the Hilton hotel in Yaounde, the UNICEF representative, Felicité Tchibondat, said 14 million girls below the age of 18 get forcefully married every year in the world. A view corroborated by the AU representative Mariama Cisse who disclosed that African was the second continent where child marriage is rampant.
This practice they said takes a toll on the health of the girls as well as affects the economy of the nation. It is for this reason that the African union launched the campaign to fight against early marriages on May 29th, 2014. So far the campaign has been launched in 15 African countries at the national level and Cameroon will be the 16th country to join the campaign as from Monday.
The AU and UNICEF will be using the opportunity offered by the 10th edition of the Women’s AFCON to pass messages through posters, video projections, musical performances by Sally Nyolo and a gala night to raise funds to assist girls who are victims of early marriages. The campaign will also visit schools in the company of some players to talk to the girls to learn to embark on education.
The press conference also offered the opportunity for the chairman of the organizing committee of the Women’s AFCON, Leodegar Tenga to express satisfaction on the state of preparation for the tourney. The General Secretary of CAF, Hicham El Amrani disclosed that his organization was working on creating new competitions for women in an effort to promote feminine football on the continent. The president of Fecafoot, Tombi A Roko was also in attendance at the press conferences and spelled out that everything was ready for the kick off of the tournament but for some last minute finishing touches.