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10 women arrested after undergoing FGM

Police in Narok town are holding 10 women who had just undergone Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) carried out at Melelo area in Narok South Sub County.
Narok South Deputy County Commissioner Mr. Felix Kisalu said they received information from members of the public that a group of girls were held in the homestead of Mr. Stephen Chemunyas and his wife Ms. Emmy Chebet who is the suspected circumciser.
“We raided the homestead in the wee hours of the morning on Saturday morning and found the 10 women, who happen to come from different families locked in the house,” said Kisaulu.
The Deputy Commissioner said the 10 women were taken to Narok County Referral Hospital where all were confirmed to have undergone the retrogressive illegal cultural practice.
“We have intensified the war against FGM following President Uhuru Kenyatta directive that the practice should end by the year 2022. Those still practicing it should be warned of dire consequences,” he said.
Narok Children Officer Mr. Pilot Khaemba said the women were yet to be taken for age assessment to ascertain whether they were children or adults.
“They will be taken to the same hospital facility on Monday to ascertain their ages before being arraigned in court. Whether they are adults or children, the practice is still illegal,” said Khaemba.
For now, the officer said they have secured a girls’ home where the ten were hosted as they awaited the court process.
Speaking during a Baraza held in Ongata area in Trans Mara West Sub County early this year, the Rift Valley Commissioner Mr. George Natembeya lamented of the increasing cases in Narok County saying it was one of the 22 counties in the country where the practice is rampant.
He linked the high number of teenage pregnancy with FGM saying many girls became mothers after undergoing the ritual as it was believed to be a transition from childhood to adulthood.
“I want to assure that I will fight this vice called FGM once and for all in this county. I will ensure that the culprits are properly punished according to the law so that nobody will dare repeat the act,” said Natembeya.
The Regional Commissioner accused the chiefs for collaborating with the residents to hide the outdated practice promising to sack chiefs who would not report or rescue girls from FGM in their area of jurisdiction.
“We cannot continue speaking the same thing year in year out yet we have chiefs and their assistants on the ground. It is time we become serious on this issue and fight this issue completely,” he said.

By Ann Salaton

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