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Uproar After Somali Lawmaker Presents Bill To Legalize Child Marriage

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Uproar after Somali lawmaker presents bill to legalise child marriage

Somalians have reacted to the new bill being sponsored by a lawmaker that will legalize child marriage.

The bill that was introduced in parliament earlier this month by a presidential ally, deputy speaker Abdiweli Mudeey has caused a storm of criticism from lawmakers when they realized it would legalize marriage at puberty – as early as 10 years for some girls.

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Mudeey told lawmakers that it had been reviewed by clerics and “this bill is the correct one based on Islam.

There is no law mandating a minimum age for marriage in Somalia. Data from a government survey this year show that nearly one third of the girls in the country are married before their 18th birthday – just under half of those before the age of 15.

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It is unclear when Somalia parliament might vote on the bill.  Legislator and human rights activist, Sahra Omar Malin has joined many lawmakers in strongly rejecting the bill.

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Uganda: Two Arrested Over Makerere University Fire / ANN News

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Uganda Two Arrested Over Makerere University Fire ANN News

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Soaring Inflation Hampers South Sudan Government / ANN News

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Soaring Inflation Hampers South Sudan Government / ANN News

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Bah Ndaw Sworn In As Mali’s Transitional President Following Coup

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Bah Ndaw Sworn In As Mali’s Transitional President Following Coup

Mali’s new interim president Bah Nda`w has been sworn into office today, Friday at a ceremony in the nation`s capital, Bamako.  The former defence minister and retired army colonel was picked by coup leader, Colonel Assimi Goita, to head a transitional government until elections are held. Colonel Assimi Goita, will serve as deputy president.

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Nda`w said, in his inauguration speech, that he will end militant insurgency in the country’s north and stop organized crime.

The military junta in Mali took over power and forced Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta out of office five weeks ago. ECOWAS leaders have overseen negotiations for a return to democracy.  The appointment of a civilian president was a condition for the west African regional group, ECOWAS, to lift the sanctions it earlier imposed after the coup.

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Mali leaders are hoping ECOWAS will lift sanctions on the country after the inauguration. The new government is expected to be in office for a transition period of 18 months that will lead to an election.

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