At least ten primary school girls between the ages of 13 and 19 are camping at Jeff Rest House at Nkhotakota Boma for commercial sex work after dropping out of school.
The eldest among the group comes from Traditional Authority Mwansambo in the same district and has a four-year-old child.
She explained that her mother thinks that she is married at the boma and takes care of the child.
“I always hire a man when I am going home. The man pretends to be my husband and this makes my mother think that I am married,” she said.
Some of the girls say they sleep with an average of ten men per night and each man is supposed to pay between MK700 to MK1500 depending on how the customer negotiates.
Lilian and Thoko (not real names) aged 14 and 13 years respectively were both learning at Dwangwa Junior Primary School when they dropped out last term.
“My mum is married to another man who is very harsh to me and my brother. My parents separated before I was born and my biological father is in South Africa. Whenever he sends items for us, mum sells out the goods and never gives us the proceeds,” she said.
Lilian added that her mother sells locally distilled alcoholic spirits popularly known as Kachasu.
Just like Lilian, Thoko says she ran out of home because of ill treatment especially from his own father who married another wife after the death of her mother.
“My mother died in 2011 but my father does not love me. He often beats me severely and I am here (rest house) so that I find peace,” she said.
A visit by this reporter to the girls’ homes indicated that both parents were aware that their little girls are plying business as commercial sex workers.
“My daughter is a thief. She has been counselled by police and community policing forum for more than ten times. I have tried many times to nurture her into a responsible and admirable young lady but I have failed,” said Lilian’s mother.
The mother admitted that the Kachasu beer business she does may have contributed to her daughter’s behaviour hence she asked well-wishers to help her out with some reasonable capital so she can venture into a different business.
On the other hand, Thoko’s father wants government or organisations to intervene with counselling to reform his daughter.
“Actually, she vanished from home two months ago after being disciplined by Nkhunga police officers. I have tried to mould my girl into an educated person but let me confess that I have failed,” said the father who owns a retail shop at Dwangwa.
Nkhunga Police Station’s Child Protection Worker, Emmanuel Semu, acknowledged having tried to discipline the girls.
He said that there is need for parents and law enforcers to work collectively if those two children are to transform.
“It shows that the girls’ parents have totally given up. They leave all the work into our hands, but I assure you if we were to work together the children would change,” Semu said.
The man who is responsible for looking after the rooms at Jeff Rest house, only identified as Neba said he tries to ignore the girls but they threaten him hence he just receives the rental fee from them.
“They give me MK1500 every day for a room. Actually, I just make sure that they keep their rooms smart,” he said.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :