FGM still alarming in pastoral communities
Cases of female genital mutilation in West Pokot County remain alarming despite the government’s effort to end the vice especially in pastoral communities.
Leaders from the county have called for an affirmative action in bid to fight against FGM in the County.
Speaking during the launch of anti –FGM campaign in Kapenguria town, leaders led by Deputy Governor Titus Lotee said despite sensitization against the vice, preference of FGM in the county is at 96 percent.
He said girls are still affected by the barbaric tradition that has denied them access to education as they are married off after undergoing the cut.
He called on stakeholders to unite against the vice to ensure women in the community are not demonized to live miserable life.
Lotee reiterated that the county government fully supports efforts geared towards ending female genital mutilation in the region.
“We fully support the fight against FGM and it’s in our manifesto,” he said.
He observed that the county government has set aside six million to each and every ward in the county to promote education.
“We want girls to access education hence help the community,” noted Lotee.
Anti FGM Board chairperson Chebii Kilimo said the government will continue to engage with communities in an effort to end the vice.
Kilimo said that the anti FGM law was not created to hurt the communities practicing the out dated practice.
Chebii pointed out that the law is a ladder that will help the communities that were left behind in development to prosper.
“The law is like a ladder, where people climb hence the government is using it to raise the life of those still behind,” said Chebii.
“The law will help those people who are still behind and was not passed to hurt the communities around,” Chebii added.
She called on all stakeholders to put up policies that ensure girls are protected and given chance to better their lives.
West Pokot County Commissioner Wilson Wanyanga gave stern warning to health workers who abet mutilation of girls in the grassroots.
He said the government has rolled out investigations to arrest culprits who are taking advantage of innocent girls to get money.
He said intelligence reports have shown that some health workers have been conducting the cut to girls by colluding with their parents.
The Global Media campaign representative, Domitila Chesang urged the county government and area leaders to have a plan on how to eradicate the tradition in the region.
“Our leaders have not been serious enough. There is no justice to our girls if FGM is still on. There is no justice if our girls are not going to school,” she said.
She called on the county government to fund anti FGM Activities hence called on the county assembly to pass bills that will help end FGM.
“We need the county government to help with us with building rescue centers. The county should also support upcoming artists from the area as they are doing a vital job on the sensitization against the vice,” he said.