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Probe needless deaths during rite of passage

By The Standard | December 3rd 2018

Juliano Kanyonyo who died after he was allegedly tortured in Gatitu village during initiation period. [Boniface Gikandi/Standard] 

In many traditions across the country, circumcision is a treasured rite of passage.

It is, therefore, disheartening that this important rite of passage has been invaded by extortionist, criminal elements and quacks.

Two recent deaths unmasked the ugly turn that circumcision has taken, especially in Mount Kenya region, where reports indicate that criminal gangs are forcibly circumcising boys as young as 10.

They reveal a clash between traditionalists and parents who are now surrendering their boys to the Church for ‘modern’ circumcision.

Now, it is not up to us to dictate which is better between traditional and modern circumcision. But one thing must be made clear-that traditionally, circumcision was not just about the cut.

It was never an end in itself. On the contrary, it was a process; a beginning of a long journey to responsible adulthood.

The cut, as it is commonly called, began with a mental initiation before going further down. This is how it must remain. Anything else is a farce.

The government must therefore move with speed to probe reports of criminal gangs and extortionists taking over circumcision in Mount Kenya region, and bring culprits to book.


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