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February 16, 2019

Girl dies in Kerio Valley night cut

IT HURTS: A Pokot girl in tears after going through the female genital mutilation ordeal in a village about 80km from Marigat town in Baringo county on November 18 last year
IT HURTS: A Pokot girl in tears after going through the female genital mutilation ordeal in a village about 80km from Marigat town in Baringo county on November 18 last year

A standard seven girl died yesterday and two others hospitalised in Elgeyo Marakwet county after they underwent FGM.

She died after bleeding profusely on Sigor-Chesoi road as she was being taken to hospital.

The girl who died was a pupil at Chebilil Primary School and had been circumcised at Kowou village.

Two other girls are admitted at St Benedictine Sister’s Chesongoch Mission Hospital.

“The girls aged 12 and 11 are now in stable condition. They had been bleeding when they were brought in,” said Sister Benadete Nzuve, the chief administrative nun at the hospital.

Parents brought the girls to the hospital gate and ran away fearing arrest, she said.

Kipchumwa chief Benjamin Cherobei and his administration police officer were injured when they raided a village to stop FGM.

A police officer lost his gun but it was later recovered at Mung’wa Primary School.

One chief has been suspended for allowing her daughter to be circumcised.

Police have been deployed in the valley, where reports say more than 1,200 girls were circumcised on Sunday night.

Anti-FGM board chairperson Linah Kilimo arrived in the country from Mauritius, where she received an award for her fight against the vice.

“I am shocked beyond belief,” she said on the phone.

County commissioner Matilda Sakwa and Marakwet East deputy county commissioner Hassan Alaso said they are investigating the incidents.

Alaso said many girls were circumcised but some were saved by government officials.

“We did not get the reports on the planned FGM and due to inadequate officers, we were unable to stop the perpetrators,” she said yesterday.

The FGM activities went on simultaneously in all villages in Kerio Valley, police said.

Alaso said the incidents took place in remote areas like Mung’wo in Embobut location, Sambalat, Kowou and Chukor in Lower Sambirir.

Other villages where more girls had been circumcised are Mokora location, Kacheturgut, Kirawi, Katemuge, Kakisegei and Kipkirwon.

They also include Kaptul, Kwenoi, Koibirir, Kaben, Kowou, Kakisige, Karamwar, Kaptoboko and Mungwo.

The government has admitted that it is difficult to wipe out FGM as it is a culture entrenched in the community.

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