Virginity testing: An act of protecting girl child

THE month of August brings all sorts of memories to teenage girls in Guta RaJehova (GRJ). It is a month where the church elders test their virginity. Human rights defenders deem this act a violation of rights.

This year, on August 12, GRJ will line up girls aged between 12 and 16 to check if their virginity is still intact. GRJ spokesperson Mr Gift Makawa defended the virginity tests saying it was an act of protecting the girl child.

“These children also get valuable lessons from the virginity tests sessions, which help them to keep pure and resist things of the world which may lure them into sex,” he said. “Sex is more than physical, it is a spiritual connection. Even the Bible in 1 Corinthians 6:8 and in Jude, the Word says those who indulge in sexual immorality will suffer eternal fire. We draw the virginity testing lessons from Deuteronomy 22 which states the importance of maintaining virginity. Take note that we don’t force anyone to undergo the virginity tests.”

“The church understands that some young people may lose virginity voluntarily while some are abused. Our message to such people is abstinence.”

However, some clergymen are worried about the virginity test sessions.

Church of Central Africa Presbyterian Pastor Gibson Botomani expressed concern over the practice, saying it exposes adolescents to abuse.

“l am a bit worried about the practice because this is how abuse starts. When done right, we may have good results but some have sinister motives,” he said.

Pst Botomani said virginity tests may help instil self-discipline in young people in the fast-paced world.

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