Anti FGM Board Chairperson Ms. Agnes Pareyio called on Bomet County Chiefs and their Assistants to support the Government in implementing the Presidential Directive to end FGM by 2022 noting that it is a collective responsibility of various government agencies.
While addressing the chiefs in Bomet town, the Chairperson called for total support in eradicating FGM in the County. She bemoaned that residents had changed tack and devised a new trend of cutting women instead of girls in a bid to beat the law. She reiterated that any form of FGM is illegal to all persons irrespective of age.
She told the Chiefs that the success of the war on FGM will depend on the willingness of the law enforcers to undertake their duties with commitment particularly total enforcement of the law and creating awareness against the practice.
Ms. Pareyio added that there has been resistance in eliminating the vice but maintained that national administrators are better suited to engage their people with the support of elders to fight the vice just like they fight other negative vices in society.
“There are some instances where chiefs have been attacked and threatened. Some chiefs have been unrelenting and have succeeded. I urge you to be firm as no one can stop the resolve of the government to protect its people from harmful practices,” said Ms. Pareyio.
The Chairperson was accompanied by the CEO Ms. Bernadette Loloju and Anti FGM Board staff. She also urged the chiefs to preserve the evidence to beat the wheel of justice saying that in most instances, the wheel of justice was taking too long and the evidence could disappear or get tampered with.
“In some instances, the wheel of justice moves too slowly. The judiciary has been supportive but sometimes to prosecute a case successfully may become involving. It can get difficult as the courts may ask for new evidence from recovered victims. Besides, the wound is in the private parts. However, all is not lost and you can prosecute a case successfully with good evidence,” she observed.
The CEO Ms. Bernadette Loloju stated that Bomet was one of the hot spot counties with a very high prevalence. “The Board is ready to do what it takes to bring the statistics to zero by 2022. I call on parents to be the protectors of their children as you are spoiling their future,” stated Ms. Loloju.
“Our pride is not seeing people jailed but to protect girls and people to understand the effects of FGM are dire. We will do all that is possible and make people see that ending this vice is a serious and urgent affair,” she added.
Bomet Central Deputy County Commissioner Mr. Said Abdallah said the forum was a perfect opportunity to find a way forward and ensure the vice is ended by working on intelligence reports and acting on time.