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World IN BRIEF : KENYA : Government Annuls Child Marriage

May 06, 1996|From Times Wire Reports

The government annulled a marriage between a 9-year-old boy and a 12-year-old girl, arranged because his mother needed a servant and the bride's father needed cattle. The parents were ordered jailed last week by Kuria District Commissioner John Egesa, the Kenya News Agency reported. There were no details on the terms of their incarceration. The Ministry of Education is campaigning against early marriages to quell the high dropout rate in Kuria district schools. The girl's father, Muniko Mwita, told the commissioner that he married off his daughter because he needed plowing oxen. He said he received five head of cattle as a bride price and had expected five more "when the girl matured." The boy's mother, Teresa Kwamboka, said she needed household help after her three daughters married.

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