Sudanese Dad Marries off Daughter for 500 Cows, 3 Cars, and $10K on Facebook

Published November 22nd, 2018 - 04:48 GMT
(Shutterstock/ File Photo)
(Shutterstock/ File Photo)

The ad was taken down 15 days after it went up, but not before the girl had been married.

A 16-year-old girl in South Sudan was auctioned after her father put up an advert on social media platform Facebook to marry her off. The child bride's father reportedly received 500 cows, three cars and $10,000 in exchange for his daughter.

Facebook has come under fire after the girl was bid on by five men, some of whom were reportedly high-ranking South Sudanese government officials, children's rights organisation Plan International said.

Although Facebook said the post was taken down as soon as they became of aware of it, the girl was already sold off by then, as per CNN report.

The incident has activists concerned, fearing this could inspire other families to use social media sites to receive larger payments.

Plan International's country director in South Sudan, George Otim, said: "That a girl could be sold for marriage on the world's biggest social networking site in this day and age is beyond belief." He added, "This barbaric use of technology is reminiscent of latter-day slave markets."

While Facebook told that the advert posted on the site on October 25 and that it removed it on November 9. Facebook's spokesperson said in a statement, "Any form of human trafficking -- whether posts, pages, ads or groups is not allowed on Facebook.

"We removed the post and permanently disabled the account belonging to the person who posted this to the Facebook."

The spokesperson added, "We're always improving the methods we use to identify content that breaks our policies, including doubling our safety and security team to more than 30,000 and investing in technology."

Suzy Natana, the South Sudanese National Alliance for Women Lawyers (NAWL) lawyer, said: "A few of our colleagues were able to get in touch with the mother (of the bride) and she was not happy about it.

"She added that the marriage took place on November 3, 2018, and is the highest bride price that has been reported in the region.

While, Judy Gitau, Equality Now's regional coordinator for Africa said, "Violations against women in South Sudan are a continuing issue, but for Facebook to allow their platform to enhance these violations is a problem."

Added that Facebook has a responsibility to uphold women's rights, Gitau added, "They ought to put in place more human resources to monitor their platform to ensure that women's rights, and indeed the rights of all people, are protected."

This article has been adapted from its original source.

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