County on high alert over FGM

The government is on high alert and ready to prevent rampant cases of FGM in in Embu County during school holidays.

The Embu West Deputy County Commissioner (DCC), Caroline Imaya said chiefs and their assistants were working closely with the locals to arrest anyone found practicing the vice, including parents propagating the retrogressive culture.

Speaking in Embu town on Monday, she said statistics showed that 78 per cent of women in the County underwent the cut when between five and 14 years old.

She said statistics, contained in the Kenya Bureau of Statistics 2014 demographic and health survey is worrying since those interviewed claimed that they were forced into the act.

The statistics also show that 31per cent of women in the area underwent the cut when aged between 15 and 48 years.

This comes barely a month after three women were arrested for forcing their daughters aged between nine and 12 years to undergo the cut in Gichiche area, Mbeere South Sub County and were released on a Sh20, 000 fine each. The circumciser too was arrested.

Imaya said many girls opted to drop out of school or engage in early marriage after undergoing the practice, while others became traumatized.

These are school going girls who are mostly forced into the act. Most of them become traumatized to the extent of dropping out of school. We will not rest until we stem out the vice, she said.

The DCC also urged parents to guide their children during this festive period to dissuade them from falling in various pitfall of life.

This comes after revelations by the Society for Women and Aids in Kenya (SWAK) in Embu County that HIV/AIDs prevalence in the County, currently standing at 3.5 per cent was highest among children below 18 years.

Source: Kenya News Agency