Alhaji Amidu Sulemana, Upper West Regional Minister, has advised girls to report to the appropriate authorities any attempt by their parents to force them into early marriage to the detriment of their education.
According to the Regional Minister, parents especially the non-educated ones in the rural areas, who did not understand the importance of education, often thought giving out their daughters for early marriage was more beneficial to them than sending them to school.
Alhaji Sulemana gave the advice at the opening of a week mentorship camp for girls in Wa on Tuesday.
The mentorship camp, which is part of the Basic Education Scholarship Programme, is being organised by the Gender Education Unit and the Ghana Education Service (GES) with funding from United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
The programme, which is under the theme: ?Empowering Girls through Education: Inspiring Futures? brought together 150 participants from two districts namely, Lawra and Bole Districts in the Upper West and Northern Regions.
Alhaji Sulemana urged the girls to take their education seriously since it was the only way that could guarantee them decent lives in future.
Madam Margaret Korri, Gender Education Unit Project Officer, said the overall objective of the camp was to expose girls from the rural communities to an environment, which was different from theirs in order to afford them the opportunity to interact with people from other backgrounds to improve upon their self confidence.
It would also motivate the girls to aspire to achieve higher educational goals.
She said the programme, which would provide beneficiaries with school materials, would also put in place programmes such as the mentorship programme to create opportunity for the girls to acquire life skills that would enable them to effectively deal with the challenges ahead.
Madam Margaret said education was the only way to break the poverty cycle and consequently reduce women?s economic dependency on men.
Alhaji Daud Yahaya, an official from the Regional Education Office, appealed to parents to take their children education seriously especially the girl child.
He said education was the only way through which women could get liberated to make informed decisions and choices for themselves.