Missing teeth likely point to domestic violence - CEC

Embu Gender executive Joan Mwende at Nembure Social Hall on Tuesday / REUBEN GITHINJI
Embu Gender executive Joan Mwende at Nembure Social Hall on Tuesday / REUBEN GITHINJI

Many women with gaps in their mouth could have had their teeth knocked out by abusive husbands.

Embu Gender executive Joan Mwende says cases of women losing teeth in domestic brawls have increased.

She expressed disappointment that the beauty of those women has been destroyed for good.

Speaking on Tuesday at Nembure market during the ongoing cultural festivals in various subcounties, Mwende said it is a crime for any spouse in marriage to batter the other.

She said couples should solve their differences in an amicable manner.

She urged those injured by their spouses to report the matter to the police so that the partner is punished according to the law.

“I can see many of you have no teeth and am told they were knocked out by your husbands during gender violence. Please, when something like that happens to you don’t just keep quiet but report to the authority so that he can be stopped,” Mwende said.

Some women who were present admitted that their teeth were knocked out by their husbands and promised they would in future not suffer in silence.

Noting that the worst-hit area was Manyatta subcounty, Mwende asked the affected couples to seek counseling from people they trust and religious leaders.

In Kenya, a recent study found that 32 per cent of young women aged 18–24 years and 18 per cent of their male counterparts reported experiencing sexual violence before the age of 18, according to the World Health Organisation.

The CEC also decried female genital mutilation of school going girls in the county during the holidays. She said the practice denied the victims the necessary education and also caused health complications.

She said many girls were being circumcised from the age of six and getting pregnant early after engaging in premarital sex.

She asked women, who encouraged FGM, to stop it because it is an outdated practice.

Mwende further condemned men who had abandoned their families and instead engaged in alcohol drinking and chewing the popular stimulant muguka.

She further said the county had set aside Sh2 million for assisting persons with disabilities.

She asked disabled persons to liaise with her office for consideration on how to benefit from the kitty.