An old South African law which allows for girls as young as 15 and boys from the age of 18 to get married has been brought into the spotlight as the Law Reform Commission requests that it be scrapped.

The South African Marriage Act of 1961 which allows for young girls and boys to be legally married is being judged by the Commission in the hopes that the country will do away with this archaic law.

Along with the reconsideration of this marriage law, the Commission has also raised the question if marriage should even be registered under a single legislative body in the first place.

Pierre van Wyk, Principal state law adviser for the South African Law Reform Commission, spoke to CapeTalk and said that a law such as this could not be considered constitutional.

“The Marriage Act of 1961 says no boy under the age of 18 years and no girl under the age of 15 years shall be capable of contracting a capable marriage except with the written permission of the minister or any officer in the public service,” said van Wyk.

At the age of 15 girls can surely not be prepared for the monumental commitment of marriage or even fully understand what they are committing to – this is the logic that has caused the Commission to request something be done about this outdated law.

Locals are being urged to email [email protected] and share their opinion on the topic before 31 August 2019.

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