Chiefs and assistant chiefs in Turkana county who fail to report parents found marrying off their teenage girls in exchange for wealth risk losing their jobs.
The county commissioner Muthama Wambua while putting the administrators on notice, also threatened to arrest the concerned parents as well as grown up men purporting to marry the young girls.
Wambua has now directed chiefs to give him a list of all parents and old men found participating in teenage marriages for action, while blaming parents for using their girls as a source of wealth.
The county commissioner spoke Wednesday, while leading the county security team in a tour of Turkana south sub county, where he visited Lokichar and Kainuk to ensure compliance with the government’s directives in containing Covid- 19.
Wambua said all bars have been closed following the directive but clarified that wines and spirits outlets were free to operate within the stipulated time.
“We have looked around ensured that bars are not opened and we shall be moving to Kakuma and Lokichoggio to sensitize the businesspersons,” he said, adding that the committee was also ensuring that public service vehicles also comply with the directives.
On his part, the county police commander Samuel Ndanyi said they would enforce the president’s directive without fear or favour.
“All vehicles must follow the laid down procedures to ensure we fight the pandemic. We need the collaboration of every citizen to win this war,” said Ndanyi, while adding that police officers manning the barriers erected along the roads to ensure compliance would be firm.
The county commissioner further said chiefs have also been tasked to ensure that weddings and other traditional gatherings where people crowd do not take place.
At the same time, he noted that the Kazi Mtaani programme has been going on smoothly noting that uprooting of Mathenge trees has helped boost security in places like Lodwar where thieves used bushes as hideouts.
Meanwhile, by providing an alternative source of livelihood through the payments made to the youth, the government project has helped reduce crime rate in the area.
Wambua said the next phase of the youth programme would include clearing of clogged drainage system, road repairs and beautification of Lodwar town.
By Peter Gitonga