The chief of Kpassa, Ubor Konja VI has warned parents and guardians to stop forcing their young daughters into early marriages adding that any parent or guardian caught doing so will be prosecuted.
He also expressed disgust about the notion that women need little to no education compared to their male counterparts because their place is in the kitchen/home, saying parents must make equal investments with regards to the education of their children, both male and female.
Ubor Konja gave the warning when he addressed the youth and people of Kpassa in the Nkwanta North district of the Volta region during the inauguration of the area's branch of the Kokonba Student Union (KONSU).
The chief who is also a member of the group was optimistic the union would help reverse the high illiteracy rate in the entire district and pledged his unalloyed support for its programs.
KONSU is made up of young educated people determined to improve the standard of education in their hometowns and villages.
The group seeks to find a lasting solution to the soaring illiteracy rate among Konkonba communities and other neighborhoods within its area of operation.
It is also help to improve girl child education, destroy bad cultural practices and improve development in the Nkwanta North district.
In his address, the union's President, Moses Dalbapu said the group intends to educate the people on the importance of education, good health, sanitation and good agriculture practices. He called for the need to also erase the general perception that Konkomba's are violent people who easily resort to using guns instead of diplomacy to resolve disputes.
Mr. Dalbapu noted that despite financial constraints, the association will work hand in hand with the traditional authorities and other interest groups to promote inter-tribal unity and curb illiteracy in the area. He appealed to stakeholders, cooperate bodies and faith-based organizations to support the initiative.
Nkwanta North District Chief Executive, Paul Levin Gyato commended the youth for their initiative and noted that the greatest asset for community development is knowledge and skills.
The Nkwanta North district is one of the newly created districts carved out of the Nkwanta District by L1 1846 and inaugurated on February 29, 2008. The district capital is Kpassa, about 270 km from Ho, the regional capital. A substantial number of schools in the area require rehabilitation or new classroom blocks.
Facilities such as libraries, furniture, textbooks and other teaching and learning materials are woefully inadequate in most of the schools. DAILY GUIDE'S tour of some of them revealed that practical subjects such as ICT are usually not taught due to lack of equipment and teacher expertise.
This is because only a handful of schools have electricity while all of them lack computers at the basic level. Statistics indicate that about 70 percent of the population aged 15 years and above are illiterate with 77 percent of the women being uneducated.
Most young women aged 15 to 25 are forced into early marriages, a contributing factor to the high illiteracy rate. There are 25 currently kindergartens, 84 primary schools, 38 junior high schools and three senior high schools in the district.
School attendance is poor, especially in the villages. Overall, there are twice as many boys in basic school as girls and many girls do not complete their education, although basic education (kindergarten-JHS) is offered free of charge.