Kajiado North Gender office sounds alarm over rising defilement cases

The Kajiado North sub-county Gender Office has raised a red flag over a rise in defilement cases in the area.

A secondary school in Matasia area, Olkeri Ward is among schools that have recorded a high number of defilement cases, with most perpetrators being boda boda operators from the ward.

Speaking during the Alternative Justice System (AJS) Workshop  in Ngongโ€™, Officer Sharon Kimathi noted that during school half-terms and holidays, they receive large numbers of defilement cases.

She regretted that it was difficult to take action against the culprits because some of the defiled girls protect the offenders and decline to provide information when summoned to give evidence while some disappear with the culprits only to re-appear days later.

In the latest cases, eight girls from the school and one from a school in Oloolua Ward – all aged between 14 to 17 years – were reported defiled.

Kimathi said that it was becoming hard to nab culprits because the girls share on how to intentionally conceal evidence whereas in other cases, parents side with the offenders and decline to share evidence.

AJS Kajiado cosmopolitan Chair Dr. Henry Omae called on school heads to organize meetings together with parents and sensitize girls on sexuality to reduce cases of pregnancies, Sexually-Transmitted Diseases (STDs) to ensure they continue with their studies.

Defilement and attempted defilement cases have been on the rise in Kenya with 9,484 children being defiled in 2021 according to a Ministry of Health report released last year.

However the numbers are estimated to be higher as the Ministryโ€™s Kenya Health Management Information System only captures victims under medical care.

The law is very strict on defilement but corruption among some law enforcers and protection of perpetrators by parents has denied many victims justice.

The law states that defilement of a child 11 years and below carries a sentence of life imprisonment while defilement of a child between the ages of 12 to 15 carries a sentence of 20 years imprisonment; those guilty of defiling a child between 16- 18 years old are jailed for not less than 15 years.

By Our Reporter

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