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Lessons from Zimbabwe’s Ruvimbo Tsopodzi & Loveness Mudzuru

Thanks to the bravery of two teenage girls, child-marriage has now been banned in Zimbabwe. Why this is not making headlines everywhere, I do not know but I am very glad to have come across the good news in an article published by Upworthy.

Two teenage girls, Ruvimbo Tsopodzi and Loveness Mudzuru who were married already at age 16, took the government of Zimbabwe to the country’s Constitutional Court to challenge this norm of child-marriage. They were victorious and it is now illegal for anyone below the age of 18 to be married in Zimbabwe. Talk about girl power! This story on the victory of Ruvimbo and Loveness was a major highlight of my week and there are lessons that we can take from these courageous girls, who are still in their teens, according to the story published by Upworthy.

The first lesson is to conquer the fear. In a lot of societies, organizations and institutions, fear is a major factor. People are unable to speak up against the so-called powerful. Sometimes you are afraid of being the first to challenge the status quo. But think of it this way: If I don’t, then who will and even if someone will, when? Loveness and Ruvimbo challenged the status quo. They took a whole government to court. It is like David against Goliath. But the girls stood in their bravery, their passion and their truth, and won.

With the story of these girls, this Twitter fan (me) can’t help but think – hashtag Girl Power (#Girlpower). In almost every society, women are a minority group, we are victimized, we are marginalized and we are often left to defend ourselves. But somehow, we always manage to break the glass ceiling, we always dismantle the barriers, somehow we always surface. That “somehow” is that girl power or woman power that we possess. Girls are STRONG and it is inspiring to see how much we are soaring, around the world like Ruvimbo and Loveness.

Lastly, never forget that in society, we do not owe the state a submission of our human rights. The state is meant to protect its citizens from violations of human rights and physical attack, and ensure that the citizens are given opportunity to succeed. However, if the state fails to protect you, it is your right to peacefully demand for an acknowledgement of your rights. This is exactly what Loveness and Ruvimbo did, by taking the government of Zimbabwe to court. I celebrate these girls because they have paved the way for liberty for so many girls in their country, in the continent of Africa and girls all over the world.

Love & peace,

Chiamaka

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