The State could be forced to adopt tough measures to end Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) if the practice will not end this year as directed by President Uhuru Kenyatta, Narok South Deputy County Commissioner Felix Kisalu has cautioned.
Kisalu said the government has used a lot of resources to campaign against the retrogressive cultural practice warning that “it will not be business as usual once the period directed by the president is over”.
“We may be forced to change from a soft gear to a hard military approach to ensure the practice is completely eradicated in this sub-county. We cannot continue singing the same song year in, year out without results,” the administrator warned.
He spoke during a gender meeting held in a Narok Town hotel organised by AMREF international where he said the government has funded and worked with numerous Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) to end the practice by the year 2022.
“Nothing will change the presidential directive. If he directed the practice to end by the year 2022, then that must be the case. We will use any approach we can to ensure no woman, whatever the age, has undergone the cut,” he reiterated.
Kisalu said due to the changing tactics adopted by the practitioners, they will use technology to detect those involved in the cut and ensure they are severely punished so that they can act as an example to others who intend to undergo the cut.
The effects of FGM, he said, should be taught in every cultural event such as Manyattas, weddings, men circumcision ceremonies so that the community can be aware of the dangers they expose their girls to.
At the same time, the Narok Children Officer Pilot Khaemba said the parents of any child rescued from FGM should face the full force of the law.
“Every NGO that rescues girls from FGM should follow-up and arrest the parents who had intended to cut the girl. Otherwise, if we rescue the girl and leave the parents to walk free, we will not be acting as per the law,” said the Children’s Officer.
AMREF international has launched anti-FGM programmes in Narok South Sub county aimed at empowering the community on the Alternative Rights of Passage (ARP).
Narok County was ranked among the 22 counties in the country where FGM is practiced, with the practice being rated at 78 percent among the Maa community.