THE CUT

FGM undermines the esteem of our girls - DP Ruto

In Summary

• End FGM initiative is a collaboration of UNFPAKen, Anti-FGM Board and UshangaKe.

• Ruto said Kenyans should join hands in ensuring that early child marriages and FGMis eliminated.

Deputy President William Ruto addressing the press at his Karen home office after flagging-off End FGM Initiative program on Thursday 27, 2019.
Deputy President William Ruto addressing the press at his Karen home office after flagging-off End FGM Initiative program on Thursday 27, 2019.
Image: DPPS

Deputy President William Ruto has asked all state agencies to step up war on Female Genital Mutilation as a way to tackling gender inequity in Kenya

Speaking at his official residence in Karen on Thursday, Ruto said FGM and early marriages undermine health, education and social economic development of girls and women.

 

"FGM reduces and undermines the esteem of our girls and women. It undermines their health and progress and encourages inequality in our society," Ruto said.

He added, "All government agencies must support the end FGM campaign to free girls from shackles of retrogressive cultural practices. We must purpose to work shoulder to shoulder to deal with the challenge in the society".

The DP said FGM has negative effects on girls and women and is violence that must be stopped by all means.

 He said the society must create safe spaces for girls and women to realise their potential, thrive and accelerate gender parity.

He added that the government and its agencies will support the Anti-FGM campaign in order to free Kenyan girls from the vice.

He said Kenyans should join hands in ensuring that early child marriages and FGMis eliminated.

Ruto said President Uhuru Kenyatta, Danish government and the UNFPA will be co-hosting a major conference on Gender equality in Kenya.

Deputy President witnessed signing ceremony of the End FGM Beads Initiative.
Deputy President witnessed signing ceremony of the End FGM Beads Initiative.
Image: DPPS

Ruto also lauded programmes such as UshangaKenya saying it encourages the community to utilise the cultural value of beads and catalyse the end FGM movement.

 

"End FGM Beads Initiative is a key intervention that will empower pastoralist women by promoting the sale of bead products; increase awareness against these retrogressive practices and foster sustainable development," he said.

End FGM initiative is a collaboration of UNFPAKen, Anti-FGM Board and UshangaKe.

The initiative comes after after President Uhuru Kenyatta said he wants to see an end to Female Genital Mutilation by the end of his time in power in 2022.

Uhuru commented on FGM while speaking to the Women Deliver conference in Vancouver, Canada, and his official Twitter account quotes him as saying that he hopes "to put an end" to FGM.

FGM has been against the law in Kenya since 2011 but the practice continues.

Campaign group 28 Too Many says that one in five Kenyan women between the ages of 15 and 49 have undergone FGM but the numbers are falling.