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Authorities ban disco matanga in Kilifi

The Kilifi County Security Committee, led by the Kilifi County Commissioner, Josephat Biwott, has resolved to completely ban the popular disco Matanga following increased cases of child defilement in the region.

The announcement comes amid confusion over control of command on the long-battled disco in Matanga, where some politicians have been supporting the norm.

Speaking during the Mashujaa Day celebration in Kaloleni, Biwott, who is also the Chairman of the Committee, said the notorious disco Matanga celebration during mourning days has greatly contributed to the increased sexual defilement of children, leading to early pregnancies amongst young girls.

The County Commissioner also gave out a stern warning to arrest and prosecute the members of the bereaved families for allowing the disco in their homes during funerals.

“According to the Kilifi County Security Committee, we have said there is no disco matanga. And I will take this opportunity. Today, here in Kaloleni, is this disco matanga not held at the bereaved family’s home? We will not waste any time; we will go for the family conducting the funeral, because they are the ones who harm our children,” he warned.

“We will prosecute anyone who has a disco matanga at their home. I am ordering all of these  security measure from today; we cannot accept our girls to get early pregnancy because others want to make money through disco Matanga,” he added.

Kilifi County Police Commander, Fatuma Hadi, said enough investigation over the increased defilement cases had been done and found out that the day and night entertainment during mourning is the main cause of the vice.

“One challenge we have is the case of defilement. There are many cases. Many people have been jailed, like last week, when one was jailed for 30 years. But we sat down and wanted to know what was causing these cases to go up. And we came to find out that the problem is that it is because of disco Matanga,” she said.

Hadi, who is a former head of the DCI Unit, also gave a stern warning that anyone who will not obey their orders will meet the full force of the government.

“On the issue of disco matanga, we have put strategies in place; there are areas that we have noted, such as Chonyi, and if you go ahead with the practice, you will come to realise that the government has spoken,” she warned.

More than 40 men from the Kaloleni area have already been jailed in the last few months due to sexual defilement crimes.

However, some of the political leaders have been supporting the disco Matanga practice, while others opt not to take sides.

Disco matanga is popular with heavy public address equipment that plays loud music for several days before the burial of a body for entertainment and also to raise funds for the funeral, where members of the community, including children, come together to enjoy the free entertainment.

By Jackson Msanzu

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