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Anti-FGM sensitization campaign kicks off in Baragoi

There are only six locations in a single ward in Samburu North Sub County where there is zero Female Genital Mutilation (FGM).

Nachola ward in Samburu North, which comprises of Parkati, Marti, Kalele, Moruakiring, Terter and Lokorkor locations has zero cases of FGM because the Turkana community living there does not practice FGM.

However, cases of child marriages are common as some residents hold on to negative cultural practices.

This emerged during a sensitization workshop for chiefs from Samburu North on the negative effects of FGM held in Baragoi town today.

Speaking after the workshop, Samburu County Director of Children Services Jane Kabiru told KNA that the sensitization exercise is a collaboration between UNICEF and the County Sector Gender Working Group (CSGWG).

The director noted that it is in line with the presidential directive to end FGM in Samburu County by the year 2022.

Kabiru said that chiefs have all the information needed to end the vice in the village and their sensitization on the negative effects of FGM through audio and visual aids will strengthen their willpower to fight the vice.

“FGM violates a woman’s rights to health, security and physical integrity; she becomes emotionally, mentally and physically scarred. We must put everyone on board to end this vice,” Kabiru said.

Apart from sensitization, the chiefs and their assistants were trained on how to report FGM issues so that a database can be created on the milestones made in the fight against the vice.

“We have given them a reporting template which they are supposed to fill and report monthly on the number of FGM cases in their locations, FGM attempts, child marriages and the number of cases prosecuted,” the Children Services Director said.

“This will enable us to get the statistics of FGM in the county as well as the progress and the gaps in the fight against FGM,” Kabiru added.

The chiefs noted that ownership of illegal firearms by residents of Samburu North is their main challenge especially in tackling child marriage cases.

“When we arrest a suspect and they get out on bond as the case continues they usually come back to the village to look for the chief and we feel threatened,” one of the chiefs lamented.

By Robert Githu

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