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The Mozambican government has closed a church in the Angónia district in Tete province in central Mozambique for promoting marriages between minors and adult believers, the district administrator said.
According to Paulo Sebastião, the church’s leadership was marrying believers who had supposedly dreamed of marrying a woman from the church, including minors.
“We closed the church because it follows practices contrary to the principles and laws in force in the country,” said Sebastião.
Radio Moçambique reports that a minor was forced to marry a polygamous elder of the church after the man said he dreamed of being married to the minor.
The Angónia district administrator added that the district authorities “rescued” the minors who were forced to marry.
The Mozambican government and Mozambican civil society organizations have pointed to premarital marriages in rural areas as one of the factors that perpetuate poverty among women in the country because they are prevented from continuing to attend school and have access to financially rewarding opportunities.Source: Lusa