24-11-2020 by redazione
No more marriages between adult men and underage girls in Kenya.
The tendency to abolish the ancient tribal and religious customs of "child brides" in the African country are increasingly pursued and banned.
Now institutions have also begun to take action in Lamu County where Islam is deeply rooted and, especially in villages on the mainland that have been less contaminated by the West and tourism, arranged marriages between families still survive, often involving brides still in adolescent and school age.
A few days ago, the county police abducted a student in her seventh year of primary school, fourteen years old, from her wedding to a 40-year-old man who had already paid her parents, according to sources reported in the local press, for an arranged marriage.
Police Chief Moses Murithi, speaking to the Daily Nation newspaper, reported that her alleged husband, a resident of the village of Ndeu, was arrested after some local residents confirmed it was him. The girl's parents ran away when they realised that they too would be accused of "selling" their young daughter.
The marriages of and between minors had a strong impact on the schooling of the Lamu girls, particularly in the sub-conteens of Hindi and Mpeketoni.
During the Covid-19 emergency, violence against girls also increased exponentially, leading to unexpected pregnancies and attempts at reparatory marriages.
Last week, Lamu police arrested a 39-year-old man who had had sex with a 14-year-old girl at home from school.
Other arrests for intercourse of adult men with minors took place in April and July in Lamu, while in the same month a 20-year-old boy was arrested for marrying a 12-year-old girl in Witu.
Last October, the same police in Lamu, in coordination with the association "World Vision" and the religious leaders of the County, saved a girl from the First Superior who had been married by an older man. This happened after a local teacher had raised the alarm.
After the arrest, it was discovered that the 17-year-old's husband would be her uncle.
It is not easy for Kenya to conduct similar battles that clash with ancestral customs.
It is only a few days ago that in Baringo, because of local traditions, a sixteen-year-old boy whose elder brothers died, by the laws of his tribe, "inherited" five wives and numerous children, with the promise of the village elders to bring other children into the world.
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