Trans Nzoia Human Rights defenders demand action against teenage pregnancies

Rift Valley Regional Commissioner George Natembeya

In Endebes, Everlyne Nekesa has organized workshops to educate teenage mothers who are living through the impact of poverty which continues pushing girls into illicit sex every day

By David Musundi

Trans Nzoia Human Rights Activists Demand Action on men for impregnating school girls as the school calendar enters the third term Human rights defenders in Trans Nzoia County have teamed up to educate women and teenagers about the impacts of illicit sex and the need of taking action against predators to address the vice which has ranked Trans Nzoia as among the top counties in teenage pregnancies.

The activists have sounded the alarms on the impact that teenage pregnancies are having on local communities: They want action, and they want it now. In Endebes, Everlyne Nekesa has organized workshops to educate teenage mothers who are living through the impact of poverty which continues pushing girls into illicit sex every day. Like many other activists, 56 -year-old Nekesa says she has had enough of empty promises by government agencies that those found culpable would be arrested, jailed and forced to carry the burden of the teenage mothers, their children and guardians as they return to class. The combative and no-nonsense human rights defender says.

Human rights activist Everlyne Nekesa Sinjo ( pictured) has joined fellow activists and leaders in Trans Nzoia calling for punitive measures against men for impregnating teenage girls ( PICTURE BY DAVID MUSUNDI)

she’s not waiting around until those concerned are put behind the bars, she adds that punitive action including castration of those responsible should be re-enacted in the Penal code. “I prefer that those women leaders who will be elected in the next national assembly, senate and county assemblies will have amendments to the laws governing child sexual molestation act to allow for castration of boys and men who will be found impregnating minors”, Nekesa said.

Ms Nekesa has teamed up with Environmentalist Immaculate Shamballa, Nominated MCA Anne Wanjiku, Nairobi businesswoman Esther Koli Wekesa, Ms Metrine Too, Kitale businesswoman Jane Frezer Wegesa and Trans nzoia county women representative Janet Nangabo Wanyama in demanding action against men for pregnant school girls.

They also want those culpable to start taking care of the teen mothers and their children, a move they say will reduce men’s bad appetite for young girls. “Men who salivate for girls in school uniform should go buy uniforms for their wives, dress them well and admire them instead of thirsting for school girls”, Nangabo said.

Ms Nangabo says Combating sexual misbehaviour requires a wide range of strategies—advocating for legislation and launching social enterprises for the teenage mothers, their children and parents who are unable to put food on their tables due to rampant poverty.

Speaking to The Weekly Vision on Wednesday during a telephone interview, the legislator said in addition to having legislation on the act, castration is a key step towards ending the vice. Ms Frezer says if there’s one thing that the COVID-19 pandemic has taught Kenyans, it’s how Trans nzoia is ranked top among counties with the highest number of pregnancies among the top with over 11,000 cases reported.

The human rights defenders and women leaders are now asking Interior Cabinet Secretary Dr Frederick Matiang’i to intervene and have all persons responsible for impregnating school learning children arrested. They said Trans nzoia had been put into the bad limelight with over 11,000 cases of teenage pregnancies with no action so far taken against the predators. Ms Shamalla says the government should ensure that all children are in school irrespective of whether they are pregnant or not as the third term enters day four.

CS Eugine Wamalwa

” We are appealing to the able Interior Cabinet secretary Dr Fred Matiang’i, his Education counterpart Professor George Magoha and together with Defense Cabinet Secretary Eugene Wamalwa to reign in on all chiefs and their assistants who to date have not given

details about the pregnant children in their areas of jurisdiction”, she said. Ms Shamala who is salivating for the Trans nzoia county women representative seat argued that there is no need for some of the chiefs and their assistants in whose areas of jurisdiction cases of pregnancies have soured to continue serving in the same government which is supposed to protect children.

” It is saddening to note that over 11,000 pregnant girls are not in school as term 3 enters the fourth day today. The government must ensure that all those responsible are dealt with”, she said. Defence Cabinet secretary Eugene Wamalwa who spoke to The Weekly Vision during a telephone conversation said it was very saddening to learn that his mother county had earned a dubious name as leading in early pregnancies.

The CS called for action against those concerned

” Security agencies are hereby called upon to take stern action against anyone implicated in this dirty game that is denying small girls chance to compete with others in school”, he said. Rift Valley regional coordinator George Natembeya ordered village administrators, Chiefs and their assistants to ensure that they provide all data on learners who have not reported back to school, four days after re-opening. He said no pupil will be allowed to stay at home.

 He said several state departments are closely working together with Headteachers to get full information on the identity and location of the absent learners who including pregnant schoolgirls to return them to school. “We have tasked village administrators, chiefs and their assistants to collect data on all children including girls who are currently expecting to enable 100 % transition’’, he said. The administrator who is a front liner among others who want to succeed Trans nzoia County governor Patrick Simiyu Khaemba expressed concern over rising cases of teenage pregnancies and directed County director of education Dr Salome Maina to ensure that no pupil, whether pregnant, is allowed to remain at home during learning.

         David Musundi is a long-serving Journalist based in Trans Nzoia County and reports on human rights issues

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