|Determinants of early marriage among married women in nine high fertility sub-Saharan African countries: a multilevel analysis of recent demographic and health surveys|
||Tadele Biresaw Belachew, Wubshet Debebe Negash, Getachew Teshale Kefale, Tesfahun Zemene Tafere and Desale Bihonegn Asmamaw
||BMC Public Health, Volume 22, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1186/s12889-022-14840-z
Multiple African Countries
Early marriage is global issue that seriously harms women’s personal development and rights. Regarding this, information about married women’s early marriage is inadequate in the world, including sub-Saharan Africa; therefore, this study aimed to assess the early marriage of women in the top nine highly fertile SSA countries.
Data for this study was obtained from the most recent Demographic and Health Surveys. A total weighted sample of 121,077 married reproductive-age women was included. A multilevel mixed-effect binary logistic regression model was fitted to identify the significant associated factors of early marriage. As a final step, the Adjusted Odds Ratio (AOR) was used with a confidence interval of 95% in determining statistical significance.
Overall prevalence of early marriage was 55.11% (95% CI: 54.8, 55.4) and ranged from 28.11% in Burundi to 80.77% in Niger. The factors significantly associated with early marriage were women’s educational status; primary education (AOR?=?0.39; 95% CI: 0.38, 0.41), secondary and higher (AOR?=?0.1; 95% CI: 0.09, 0.11), employed (AOR?=?0.73; 95% CI: 0.71, 0 .75), classified as rich wealth index level (AOR?=?0.87; 95% CI: 0.85, 0.91), a number of family size = 7 (AOR?=?1.28; 95% CI: 1.23, 1.33), community-level poverty, (AOR?=?1.28; 95% CI: 1.23, 1.33) and rural residency (AOR?=?1.16;95% CI: 1.12, 1.21).
Marriage before the age of 18 is moderately high in high-fertility countries. Therefore, the respective countries government should give due attention to access to education, and encourage the participation of women in making marriage-related decisions, especially those residing in rural areas.