Cases of incest on the rise in Busia County

0
42
Busia Chief Magistrate hon. Lucy Ambasi taking part in tree planting during the commemoration of the International African Child day at Nambale Polytechnic in Busia County.
Busia Chief Magistrate hon. Lucy Ambasi taking part in tree planting during the commemoration of the International African Child day at Nambale Polytechnic in Busia County.

Cases of incest are on the rise in Busia County even as the government and the judiciary are working on enforcing harsh penalties on culprits caught in the offense. Busia Chief Magistrate Lucy Ambasi says cases of fathers engaging in extramarital activities with their under-age daughters are increasingly being reported in the County with most cases affecting primary school children.

She further warns Boda Boda riders who are said to be taking advantage of the innocence of the young girls to prey on them.

“The practice of having sex with children who are in class six that is a girl is still a child. Let that child grow. Let a child be a child until she is eighteen years; let that child be educated so that she becomes the next Martha Koome. If you interfere with a child by the way of sexual molestation, please know that the courts are not going to be friendly to you,” she said.

According to the sexual offenses act of 2006, a defilement offense is punishable in varying degrees depending on the age of the child. For Children below 11 years, the offender is sentenced to Life imprisonment, for children between 12 – 15 Twenty (20) years in jail or more sentence is handed to the perpetrator and for children between 16-18 years, one is sentenced to fifteen (15) years or more. Hon. Ambasi called on administrative authorities to work closely with community elders to eradicate these activities in the County.

According to the children’s department in the County, Busia is recording higher cases of child abuse than the national average. The department’s director Esther Wasige says cases of sexual harassment against children are at 21% against the national percentage of 17%. Wasige further adds that cultural activities such as FGM are also on the high in the County.

“Everything negative we do is higher than the nation. So, we really need to look at that. But more than that, the community and the children themselves need to understand what is wrong, what is right, how to report, where to report and whom to report to,” said Wasige.

Nambale Sub-County Deputy County Commissioner Caroline Onchoka has sounded a warning to culprits who will be caught in children defilement. She further warns parents who tamper with the evidence of defilement with an excuse of seeking for compensations when a child is defiled, saying that kangaroo courts of solving such cases will not be tolerated. She says police officers are under firm instructions to follow up and make sure all perpetrators of such vices are arrested and brought to book.