Vihiga County Commissioner (CC), Mr. John Chelimo, has directed security organs and the Judiciary to ensure that perpetrators of defilement and rape are arrested and duly punished in accordance with the law.
Mr Chelimo issued the directive on Wednesday at Givogi village in Hamisi Sub County when he addressed a security baraza.
The Commissioner decried what he termed as “ballooning cases of Gender Based Violence (GBV)”, especially defilement and rape, blaming the vice for tainting the county’s image countrywide.
“In terms of gender based violence, Vihiga County is rated number four nationally according to several surveys carried out by both government and non-governmental agencies concerned with gender issues,” revealed Chelimo.
He cited Hamisi Sub County as a leading “hot bed” in gender based violence in the county.
“According to security records, Hamisi Sub County leads the county in reported cases of defilement and rape within the county,” disclosed the county boss.
“Hardly a week passes without one or two incidents of defilement or rape being reported from Hamisi Sub County,” he added.
Chelimo attributed increasing unwanted and early pregnancies among young girls in the region to defilement.
“The same heinous act has grossly affected academic performance of the girl child in this area,” he told the baraza.
The county boss sternly warned against defilement and rape, saying anyone arrested for committing any sexual offence crime would face the full force of the law.
Chelimo, who was accompanied by county security team, warned the locals against failure to assist security agencies in the fight against GBV.
The CC consequently advised the locals against out of court settlement when dealing with defilement and rape cases.
He blamed some defilement and rape victims for easily getting compromised by the perpetrators.
The administrator appealed to the locals to ensure victims of defilement and rape are rushed to nearby hospitals for thorough medical examination to enable the office of the Director of Public Prosecutor (DPP) to build strong cases
against suspected defilers.
“Most of the defilement and rape cases fail to pass the judicial threshold due to lack or weak evidence adduced,” noted Chelimo.
He further urged witnesses to defilement and rape incidents not to shy but courageously appear before courts to testify.
The baraza was attended by area Deputy County Commissioner (DCC) Denis Kirui, County Police Commander Beatrice Gachago, County Administration Police Commander Charles Oketch and County Criminimal Investigation
Officer Vitalis Okumu.
By Maurice Aluda