Plans are underway to provide alternative livelihood to traditional women circumcisers who have abandoned the retrogressive cultural practice and embraced modernity.
Speaking during a multiagency committee meeting to end Gender Based Violence (GBV) in the county, Narok County Commissioner Evans Achoki said the women would be empowered through training and helped to start alternative means of earning an income to boost their way of life.
However, Achoki said, the cutters who continued with the practice will be arrested and prosecuted as per the law so as to serve as an example to other women with such motives.
“Going forward, we must focus on the circumcisers to convince them to abandon that retrogressive practice and encourage them to have other livelihood undertakings,” he said.
The meeting held at the County Commissioner’s conference hall was attended by County Executive Member in Charge of Education and Gender Ms. Cicilia Wepali, County Police Commander Kizito Mutoro, seven Deputy County commissioners, heads of department and non-governmental organizations representatives.
During the meeting, a surveillance committee to monitor the fight against Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) was formed and is expected to give monthly report of their progress to the committee.
“We are working with different agencies in the government and non-governmental organizations so that we can achieve our target of eliminating FGM from the society completely. It is upon all of us to protect the girl child from any forms of violence,” he said.
World Vision Representative Ms. Mirasine Meiguran reiterated that the war against FGM is a collective responsibility urging all agencies to help in fighting the retrogressive culture that is impacting negatively to the girl child.
“We will be supporting surveillance programmes to establish where the cut is still taking place, who is involved and establish the possible livelihood alternative business that the practitioners could be introduced to,” she said.
Narok County is one of the counties in the country where FGM is still prevalent and is believed to have contributed to the high number of teenage pregnancy in the county.
The numbers have however reduced with the office of Director of Public Prosecution (ODPP) reporting to have successfully prosecuted tens of cases involving FGM this year.
By Ann Salaton