Kenya: Leaders Point to Kangaroo Court Role in Teen Pregnancies

The "courts" initiated at village level have played a role in protecting sex pests.

Women leaders in Nyandarua and Laikipia Counties have chastised village kangaroo courts for their role in the soaring number of teenage pregnancies in the country.

They have noted that the "courts" initiated at village level had played a role in protecting sex pests as many parents were opting for out-of-court settlements hence denying their children justice.

"There are a number of defilement cases going on unreported due to kangaroo courts initiated by village elders at a fee with the knowledge of some law enforcers, who derail justice for the gender-based violence (GBV) victims in most parts of the county," said Nyandarua Women Rep Faith Gitau.

She said that most of the girls were being impregnated by people well known to them and called on the government to harshly deal with perpetrators.

Mirangine Children Volunteer Simfrosa Gichohi regretted that kangaroo courts were being used to solve defilement cases with parents.

"In some instances, mothers have colluded with their teenage girls to frame incest and defilement cases with the hope of extorting the accused persons once they opt for negotiation...The courts too are failing us as cases of defilement are taking long to be executed and this provides a window for minors to be compromised," said Ms Gichohi during a security meeting that was attended by Central Regional Commissioner Wilfred Nyagwanga in Nyandarua West.

In Laikipia County, nominated MCA Irene Wacuka blamed some police officers and chiefs for allegedly helping oversee home settlement of such cases.

"We must warn people who still think that our daughters are goods for exchange or service for monetary gains," said Ms Wacuka.

At the same time, she urged parents to speak up when their children are defiled and impregnated noting that this was the only way a culprit can be dealt with.

"We are disappointed because some of these girls if you listen to their cases you will find that they have not been impregnated by their fellow young boys in school, but by ID card holders and people who are adults with intentions to destroy the lives of these girls," she added.

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