Police in Bungoma, Non-governmental organizations, parents and National government administrative officers (NGAO) have been challenged to intensify the fight against Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) in efforts to eradicate the practice in parts of the county by the year 2022.
Speaking to the press when he flagged off of the teenage pregnancy awareness month (TPAM) caravan at Chwele market, Area County Commissioner Samuel Kimiti asked chiefs to be vigilant and help the government to eradicate the vice in the region once and for all.
Kimiti said that a section of communities in the region were still practicing female genital mutilation (FGM) and this should stop.
“The government is keen to end FGM practices in our society by 2022 and I am appealing to all stakeholders to work closely to ensure that we end the vice and pave way for our girls to get education,” Kimiti said.
He said that besides FGM, early marriages and teen pregnancies have negatively impacted on education of many girls in the county with a very high number of girls dropping out of school.
Kimiti directed chiefs to embark on door-to-door search for learners including those who haven’t joined Form One and ensure that all are in school.
“The government wants all learners in school; therefore, I am directing chiefs to do a physical search in their areas to ensure that no child who ought to be in school is at home,” he said.
He asked chiefs to also fight illicit brew in their areas of jurisdiction, adding that the practice is contributing to the high school dropout rate and a hike in teenage pregnancy.
Bungoma Central Deputy County Commissioner Dorcas Rono warned that men who preyed on school girls would hence forth be arrested to face the full force of the law.
Mbuki Mburu, a representative from Amref Health Africa assured residents that the organization will give financial support to ensure that teen pregnancy is brought to near zero in Bungoma.
She added that the Teenage pregnancy awareness caravan would traverse the county to sensitize the public on the side effects of the retrogressive culture and why FGM and teenage pregnancy are no longer the thing in this century hence they need to stop.
By Godfrey Wanjala