Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Couple held in war against female ‘cut’

By ELISHA OTIENO [email protected]

A couple has been arrested in Kuria West District as the war against female circumcision is stepped up.

The parents were picked from their homes after they allegedly took their underage girls for circumcision.

Kuria West district commissioner James Mugwe said they were tracking down more parents who were violating the law against female circumcision.

And a woman described as a “notorious circumciser” escaped arrest narrowly after she spotted police officers and officials from the Children’s Department approaching her home.

She took off through the backdoor, leaving behind her son who attempted to attack the team. He was arrested and taken to the Kehancha Police Station for questioning.

At the same time, Mr Mugwe hit out at the management of the Kehancha District Hospital accusing it of failing to support the government to eradicate female circumcision in the area.

“The management seems to condone female circumcision because victims taken there by the police for treatment are released secretly before they record statements to help bring to book those behind the illegal practice,” the DC asserted.

However, it emerged that most workers at the hospital are from the local community and that they had a “soft spot for FGM” with some said to perform the cut in the hospital at a fee.

Recently, over 400 girls in Kuria community went through alternative rite of passage as others continued to seek refuge in Tanzania to escape from the painful experience.

Some 2,000 boys and 1,000 girls have been circumcised to date in Kuria West and East districts since early this month.