Kenya: Alarm Over High Number of Teen Pregnancies, Incest in Kaloleni

3 December 2020

Kaloleni MP Paul Katana has raised an alarm over the high number of teen pregnancies and incest cases in the constituency.

Mr Katana said more than 200 girls got pregnant between March and November when schools closed due to Covid-19.

Speaking at a funeral in Kaloleni, Mr Katana called on players in child protection to urgently intervene in the matter.

"This matter needs to be addressed holistically to ensure our girls remain focused on their education instead of engaging in early sex," he said.

He urged religious leaders to be at the forefront in instilling moral values among the youth and also counsel parents on how to bring up their children.

Kaloleni Deputy County Commissioner Joseph Biwott said the situation is worrying, adding that he has introduced new measures to address the matter.

He said the children's officer, who was stationed at Mariakani town, has been moved and will now work from the Deputy County Commissioner's office in Kaloleni town.

He challenged the local children's officer to be vigilant.

"The children's officer should be the one to follow up on these cases and also be there when the victims are recording their statements with the police, to support them in the whole process of justice," said Mr Biwott.

Gender-based violence

He said this will ensure success of the cases in court.

Mr Biwott is set to identify stakeholders in issues of gender-based violence through the Area Advisory Council (ACC) and the Court Users Committee to plan on mitigation measures.

He said the public should expect some changes in GBV matters in the next three months.

"We have many opportunities to improve on GBV matters with the presence of two law courts to handle all cases," Mr Biwott said .

Kaloleni constituency has two law courts in Mariakani and Kizuruni.

The Deputy County Commissioner said the success of GBV cases in courts is less than 25 per cent.

He said failure by witnesses to record statements at police stations and availability of witnesses in court have hindered the progress of GBV cases.

Mr Biwott urged parents to be responsible and vigilant.

He cited an incident in which a pastor was arrested and charged after he was ambushed hosting nine girls in his house for several days claiming that he was praying for them.

He warned parents, chiefs, assistant chiefs and village elders against conducting kangaroo courts over defilement cases and approving early marriages.

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