Dar es Salaam. The recent statement by President John Magufuli that teenage mothers will not be allowed to resume their studies after giving birth has sparked heated debate on social and mainstream media in Kenya.
On Twitter, the hashtag #StopMagufuli has been trending for two days, with most of those commenting being Kenyans who accused him of misusing his power.
“Most African despots came in this way. First as radical reformists, then benevolent dictators eventually brutal demagogues,” said Mr Anthony Mwangi (@OfficialMwangi) through his twitter account.
“Magufuli sounds more like Mugabe’s fraud, no longer the best President we once thought of,” said Paul (@OmondilisedPaul).
“This is wrong, Magufuli is inhuman. Every girl has a right to education, no matter what,” said Coxswain Machuka (@Machukah). Some even asked why the hashtag was trending with Kenyans dominating the debate. However, Tanzanians were not really silent, just using a different hashtag to debate on the matter. #ArudiShuleni was trending since Thursday when the President made his stand open during a public rally in Bagamoyo.
This comes after the government had been under pressure in recent months from some MPs and human rights activists to let teen mothers to resume their studies after giving birth. HakiElimu, the Commission for Human Rights and Good Governance, the Social Services Parliamentary Committee and the opposition, in different occasions urged the government to have a change in policy that will allow teen mums to resume with their studies after giving birth.