24 August 2002

Kenya: District Commissioner Issues Arrest Order Against Traditional Circumcisors

Police have been directed to arrest traditional surgeons found forcibly circumcising men.

Butere-Mumias District Commissioner Ernest Munyi issued the directive following the forced public circumcision of three elderly men, among them a senior Mumias Sugar Company employee, in the district.

The administrator said it was wrong for any group to force others into their traditional practices.

"All people have a right to their tradition and should not be forced into what they do not want."

Mumias police said they were looking for the people who forcibly circumcised the three men.

However, a number of traditional circumcisers insisted that they would continue targeting uncircumcised men during the current circumcision season in most parts of western Kenya, saying their tradition demanded that all men be circumcised.

Meanwhile, a man who was forcibly circumcised at Mayoni trading centre and later dumped bleeding by the roadside has instructed a lawyer to take up the matter and sue his attackers.

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