Red Cross Holds Stakeholders Meeting on FGM Eradication in Mt. Elgon


By Isabella Maua

Anti-Female Genital Mutilation whistle-blowers and other stakeholders held a dialogue meeting at Kapsokwony on Tuesday to discuss ways forward for working towards achieving zero tolerance FGM  within the Mt. Elgon region.

In a forum that drew together medical practitioners, security officers, children’s department officers, victims, and survivors of FGM and gender-based violence (GBV) from across the sub-county, the whistle-blowers cited sexually related cases as being on the rise despite their attempts to intervene in most scenarios.

“The greatest challenge we face is the ever-rising domestic violence cases whereby husbands and wives fail to address their sexual differences; poor communication between couples also leads to intimate partner violence, which we need to emphasize,” noted one of the whistle-blowers.

“One major issue among men whose partners underwent FGM is that their wives report feeling too much pain during intercourse, hence provoking unwarranted extramarital affairs that later turn into violence,” noted Jane Khisa, Bungoma County GBV Coordinator.

She, on the other hand, applauded spouses who have sought dialogue and presented the matter before the Red Cross, disclosing that they have since benefited from training and KY Jelly, which is a lubricant that reduces pain during the act.

People living with disabilities, especially children, have also been reported to face more defilement and rape cases but lack justice since there are no translators to interpret their plea before the court of law.

“We’ll appreciate it if we by all means get more sign language translators to assist us in pursuing such cases and see to it that perpetrators have been brought to book,” pleaded one of the whistle-blowers.

The media fraternity was also commended for doing a great job of being whistle-blowers and being vigilant and objective in reporting related cases and, where possible, following them up to ensure justice is served.

The community was also encouraged to report any FGM or GBV cases to the police fearlessly since the victims will be fled to safe houses as they await case proceedings.

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