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No more warrants to raid female ‘cut’ dens

Thursday May 19 2011

By Nation Reporter

The police will not be required to have an arrest warrant to enter premises where they suspect female circumcision is being carried out.

This is according to a Bill that will prohibit female circumcision.

The Bill has been amended to include the establishment of an advisory board on female circumcision in preparation for the next stage in Parliament, nominated MP Sophia Abdi Noor said.

Spells out mandate

The proposed law spells out the mandate and roles of board members, among other details that will be discussed by the committee behind the Bill in conjunction with representatives from the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Development.

The Bill, moved by Mt Elgon MP Fred Kapondi,  has been through the second reading in Parliament and the lawmaker is confident it will sail through Parliament.

“The amendment stage is the easiest part of any Bill,” he said.

The proposed law will criminalise the practice and make those involved in its practice offenders.

“There are existing laws which touch on it but they have loopholes that expose girls to the process,” Mr Kapondi told an advocacy forum organised by the Kenya Women Parliamentary Association in Nairobi.

The Constitution protects women from harmful cultural practices. Article 27 (4) says no person should be compelled to undergo a cultural practice.

Article 55(d) states that the government shall take measures to protect the youth from harmful cultural practices and exploitation.

Section 14 of the Children’s Act of 2001 also protects children from harmful cultural practices.