MORE than 8,000 cases of child neglect were reported in Eastern province last year, the Department for Children's Services has disclosed. Director Ahmed Hussein said the figure could be higher as most cases are unreported. "Of the 15,895 cases of abuse reported in the province, 8,427 were child neglect," he said.
Hussein urged members of the public to report cases of abuse to the department "to take action and save the children". He decried rampant female genital mutilation in region, adding that it is highest in Meru,Isiolo and Marsabit counties. "In the Lower Eastern region, this is common in Mwingi and Kyuso districts where girls undergo the cut from age seven, said Hussein.
The director added that there are 329,787 orphans and vulnerable children in the province adding that of these, more than are Lower Eastern. Hussein said the government's OVC programme covers six counties comprising more than 18 districts. He said the programme covers 21,825 households with 76,387 children benefiting from it. Each household receives Sh1,500 monthly.
Hussein added that a total of Sh392,850,000 was paid to 21,825 households. He said there are 82 charitable organisations supporting 7,000 children in the province. He was speaking to the press at a Machakos hotel yesterday.