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Girls rescued from abusive unions

Updated Friday, November 5th 2010 at 00:00 GMT +3
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By Job Weru and Antony Gitonga

Laikipia, Isiolo and Nakuru counties

Police and children rights activists rescued three children allegedly subjected to early abusive marriages and two others sexually abused.

On Wednesday, a girl, 15, boarded a lorry at Ol’Donyiro market in Isiolo after being clobbered by a husband said to be more than 25 years older.

Children’s rights activists Josephine Kulea and Hellen Gathogo, the National Co-ordinator of the Kenya chapter of One More Day for Children (OMDC) said the girl had been in the marriage for five years.

"Her parents are from Kirimon area in Laikipia North District, and she was married off to the resident of Ol’Donyiro," said Ms Kulea.

The girl, who was a Standard Two at Kirimon Primary School before she was married, moved the activists to tears when she narrated how her suitor recently attacked her.

"She was clobbered with a rungu on the head and collapsed. She was rescued by neighbours, who directed her to Nanyuki town," said Ms Kulea.

Two other girls were rescued from marriages after they escaped to a nearby Il’Polei Primary School.

One had been married for four months while the other seven.

"They claimed their suitors battered them almost daily for failing to bear children," said Kulea.

All three were below 16 years old.

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