Thursday, January 6, 2011

At least 300 girls underwent FGM in the Christmas week in Kenya.

At least 270 girls were lined up for mutilation in Marakwet East and Pokot Central districts in on the Christmas week:(.
Though the number of girls undergoing the rite of passage has significantly dropped over the past few years, most of them are taking part voluntarily.

After the cut, scores of the girls who may not proceed to secondary school, will be married off to already waiting suitors after coming out of seclusion in mid-January this month.

A crusader against female circumcision, Ms Lilian Plapan of Setat Women’s Group, has called for an end to the practice.

“We want chiefs in the respective villages to stop the cut since the lives of young girls are going to be wasted,” she said.

Mrs Plapan, who visited Propoi Girls Secondary School at the weekend, urged girls to identify the talents that they fit in and develop them through education.

About 74 girls in Kapsogom, Kachenyut, Kapchemila, Kakisoo, Tinyar and Kasui villages will be initiated in Kerio Valley from Friday.

Another 86 will be undergoing the rite in Sibou, Kotut, and Kapsiren villages in the second weekend of December. Another 100 in the far flung Arpolo, Embobut and Endo-Kaben locations in Pokot Central and Marakwet East will also join the queue.

Only 10 girls may be circumcised the same Friday in Kamariny and Karamwar villages neighbouring the home of local MP Linah Kilimo who campaigns against the rite.

“last year’s initiation went on as scheduled by the mutilators given that traditional signs have been observed... these include the position of stars, the weather pattern and the year’s harvest,” said Mzee Kipkaino Wero-Merei, 71.

“Most of those that were lined up to face the knife fled their homes to rescue centres in 2006 for fear of being mutilated by force but are now willing,” said another opponent of the mutilation, Ms Rose Kilimo.

Apart from curiosity to graduate into womanhood, Ms Kilimo, claimed the girls opted to get mutilated in a bid to please their parents after engaging them in four years of rebellion.

Ms Kilimo said: “This lot comprises the 2010 Kenya Certificate of Primary Education candidates who have come of age and would want to be loyal to their parents”

Some parents had quietly vowed not to pay even a cent for secondary school fees to any girl who refused to undergo the old age custom of mutilation.(Black mail:()

in Summary
They include schoolgirls who had fled to rescue centres and had alternative right of passage in 2006(right after I left) because of forced mutilation
Please tell me what would you do if your parents black mail you into robbing your womanhood?
Another sad notice that things haven't changed enough yet! How "voluntary" is it when the parents refuse school fees, the chiefs condone and promote it, and the girls have few options but to give in? This practice needs to be eradicated eventually, and any assistance given to girls to change their options needs to be. If there are laws that can be used to punish those who perform this ritual--- use them! The parents need to be shamed to allow this damage to their daughters! Breaks my heart...

Ambassador Lucy .s .Mashua President of Mashua's voice for the voiceless International
Assisting refugees in the US and representation in advocacy
The Global Ambassador for fighting Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and standing up for Women’s Rights.
And the Chairperson of a worldwide campaign against FGM.
Leading in lobbying for the HR5137 The Girl's Protection Act sponsored by Joseph Crowley and Mary Bono Mack.