Marriage law reforms address inequality and discrimination
Written by Susie Berya, Global Voices
In July 2019, Mozambique and Cote d’Ivoire became the latest countries in sub-Saharan Africa to strengthen laws to empower girls and women.
Mozambique passed a law to criminalize child marriages. Cote d’Ivoire pushed for gender equality by amending a marriage law that suppressed a woman’s rights over marital property.
On July 24, 2019, the Mozambican government passed the Law on Prevention and Combat of Premature Unions. This new law criminalizes girl child marriages. Any individual who officiates or authorizes underage marriages will be sentenced to imprisonment for at least two to eight years. Any adult who enters a marital or sexual union with a child under the age of 18 will be imprisoned for at least eight to twelve years.