Anti-FGM board launches new app in fight against female cut in Samburu

App to help fight FGM

Anti-Female Genital Mutilation stakeholders are banking on a digital mobile application to help in the war against the female cut in Samburu County

Photo credit: Pool I Nation Media Group

The Kenya Anti-Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) Board and other stakeholders are banking on a digital mobile application to help in the war against the female cut in Samburu County.

The app, called Pasha, will be used to report and track cases of FGM by allowing people to make reports anonymously. The application can be downloaded directly from the Google Play store.

The Android system will allow users to report unfolding cases of FGM in villages. After a case is reported, authorities will track and arrest the perpetrators.

Anti-FGM Board CEO Bernadette Loloju said Pasha comes as learners are expected to close schools for the long December holidays.

Most girls are subjected to the illegal procedure during the December holidays, she said.

She said Pasha will complement anti-FGM declarations that were signed in March 2021 in Kisima, Samburu County.

"The elders signed declarations last year. This app will complement in reporting cases," she said.

"We expect the app to help ahead of the December holidays when most girls are subjected to FGM."

In 2019, former President Uhuru Kenyatta pledged to end FGM and other harmful cultural practices by 2022.

Despite the legislative and policy measures adopted to prohibit the practice, it continues as some communities believe it is necessary for social acceptance and increases marriage prospects.

The government is racing against time to end the practice, which is carried out in high secrecy despite strict legislation enacted 10 years ago.

It is carried out by traditional cutters, who usually use unsterilised blades and knives.

Ms Loloju said progress has been made against the practice and the government is banking on elders and other opinion leaders in regions where it is rampant to sensitise communities on its harmful effects and the need to embrace alternative rites of passage.

"Since the involvement of church leaders and community elders, there has been a positive response from communities where prevalence rates were high,” she said.

“I believe this has helped debunk myths and in the end, we are almost getting an FGM-free nation.

"We are confident commitments by religious and cultural leaders from communities to end the practice of FGM by the end of the year will yield [positive results] because we know they are key in this fight because they are custodians of culture and beliefs."

Welcome!

You're all set to enjoy unlimited Prime content.