Reports now indicate fathers and grandfathers are defiling their children and grandchildren with few cases being reported to the authorities.
This is to Ms Mary Makokha, the Director of REEP (Rural Education and Economic Enhancement Programme) a local NGO operating from Butula, Busia County.
“In Busia, we have high cases of incest. We have had fathers defiling their children, and grandfathers defiling their grandchildren. The last case, I remember, involved an 82-year-old grandfather who could get the Pesa ya Wazee and resort to defiling young children. Fortunately, he was imprisoned for thirty years,” she noted
She added that “Most of the teenage pregnancies being reported in Busia are as a result of defilement. When incest occurs in Busia and the girl gets pregnant the child is killed, causing a lot of infant side which should be discouraged,”
Speaking during the training session to the administrators comprising of Busia County commissioners Mr Kipchumba Rutto appealed to Busia residents from normalizing Gender-based violence, especially in the current era, adding that in the past it was normal for GBV perpetrators to go free.
“We should not normalize SGBV in Busia. Previously SGBV especially defilement cases were seen as a way of making money and everybody right from the parents of the children, the chiefs, and the police.
Everybody made money from the defilement cases, but I am happy to report that the current officers in the judiciary in the county are up to the task to bring try and bring to justice the victims,” she noted
She revealed that cases of boys being sodomized in the county are high with boys below 12 years being the victims, alleging that there are hotels in Busia town that are being used as centres where the crime is committed.
“There is an upsurge in Busia where boys are being sexually abused and unfortunately, there are some hotels in Busia town that allow perpetrators to come and use their rooms, children are invited then the perpetrators abuse them sexually, and give them as little as sh200.” She noted
Busia county commissioner Mr Kipchumba Rutto urged all administrators especially the Chiefs and their assistants to work closely with other organizations to curb gender-based violence in the county by bringing the perpetrators to books.
“Together with non-state actors, we will tame the SGBV menace in Busia county. Chiefs are very important persons at the grassroots and their role is to maintain law and order, protect lives and property of the Kenyans in their respective areas,” he noted
Mr Jean Paul Murunga program officer, End sexual violence, Equality now said that they are in Busia to discuss the GBV issues with administrators because it has become a thorn in the flesh.
“There are many SGBV cases ongoing in the court and others have been reported. As of this year, we have received 29 new SGBV cases that have been presented to the court but from 2020 to date, we have received 574 SGBV cases.
He added that “We have organized this session to sensitize local administrators including, Assistant chiefs, Chiefs, Assistant County commissioners, and Deputy county commissioners to report more cases to the authorities without hiding the perpetrators to help SGBV victims get the justice they deserve.”
Ms Maryline Oundo a senior chief of Nambale township said that after the training they are going to up their game when handling issues related to Sexual and Gender-based Violence within their jurisdiction by reporting cases to respective authorities.
“We are also going to ensure that Kangaroo courts do not handle issues of SGBV so as to bring Justice to those promoting the crime,” she said.