The Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) has revealed that about 80,000 girls in the country aged 12 to 17 years are already married or living with a man.
This revelation is contained in GSS’s 2021 Population and Housing Census (PHC) report.
The GSS disclosed this information as the world marks the 10th anniversary of the International Day of the Girl Child.
“Nationally, 79,733 girls in Ghana aged 12 to 17 have been in union i.e. married or living together with a man according to the 2021 Population and Housing Census (PHC),” portions of the report read.
The GSS said, “the report is to highlight challenges preventing young girls from reaching their full potential such as early marriage, and lack of access to educational and other opportunities.”
According to the Service, 25,999 out of the total number of 79,733, girls are between 12 and 14 years – Junior High School age.
GSS further disclosed that North East Region tops the chart with the highest number of 13.0 percent.
This is followed by the Savannah Region with a percentage of 10.6 and then Northern Region with 4.0 percent of girls married or living with a man.
Also, GSS observed that “almost a quarter of a million girls (244,731) aged 6 to 14 years have never attended school at all, despite free and compulsory universal basic education.”
“Three out of every 10 of these girls are in the Northern Region which has the highest number of girls who have never attended school (73,516) followed by the Savannah (27,930) and North East (22,857) regions,” GSS added.