The Star (Nairobi)

31 December 2013

Kenya: Kilimo Happy With New Anti-FGM Job

Former assistant minister Linah Jebii Kilimo has said she is happy with her new appointment.

President Uhuru Kenyatta appointed Kilimo to head the Anti-Female Genital Mutiliation Board.

Some leaders in Marakwet have supported the new appointment.

They said Kilimo deserved the job because of her fight against FGM.

"FGM has been a major problem for some communities in Kenya. I will use my new position and the board to implement ways to deal with FGM," said Kilimo on the phone yesterday.

She was among several politicians named by Uhuru to head state parastatals.

Kilimo assured the government of her commitment to uphold girls' education.

She promised to protect girls from outdated cultural practices.

"I am humbled by the appointment as it shows the trust the Jubilee government has in me," Kilimo said.

The former Marakwet East MP promised to work closely with leaders to stop female circumcision.

FGM has been on the rise in Marakwet and Pokot regions.

And at the same time, a cross-section of leaders and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) from the North Rift region have also welcomed her appointment.

Former councilors in Elgeyo/Marakwet County Chardwick Chelumale and Joshua Belator said the appointment will boost the war against FGM which has negatively impacted on girl-child education in some parts of the country.

'We are happy that the Government has given an opportunity to Kilimo to continue with her crusade against the outdated practice,' said Mr. Belator.

They said Kilimo had in the past been involved in programmes to fight FGM especially within the North Rift region and that her new job would give her more ability and strength to deal with the vice.

Kilimo says her board would work to implement the FGM Act which was passed by parliament a few years ago and provided stringent measures to tackle FGM.

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