Two women from Ntongoni village in Tharaka-Nithi County narrated to a court Friday how they circumcised each other using a razor blade.
The suspects, Winjoy Wanja, 27, and Julia Ngugi, 25, who are married to two brothers, told a Marimanti court that they decided to get the ‘cut’ to protect their children from a lineage curse.
They said an ancestor in their marital home left a curse before she died dictating that all women married into the family must be circumcised or else their children will die.
They said the spirit of their husbands’ great grandmother had been haunting them every night by visiting them in dreams asking them to choose between getting circumcised or losing all their children.
Ms Wanja has three children, while Ms Ngugi has two.
“We decided to circumcise each other to avoid the death of our children,” Ms Wanja said.
They said when they were getting married, their husbands did not inform them that there was such a family curse. They added that they realized there was a curse in the family after they started having sleepless being hunted.
The suspects told Marimanti Senior Resident Magistrate Peter Maina that they a razor blade circumcised each other and without informing their husbands.
Ms Ngugi said that after undergoing the ‘cut’, the spirit stopped visiting them.
Mr Maina ordered the two suspects to remain in custody until November 14, when they will be brought back to court for judgement.
The women were arrested by a chief, following a tip-off.
Last year a woman from Kamwimbi village in Igambang’ombe was sentenced to 6 years in prison by a Chuka court after she was found guilty of forcing her 12-year-old twin daughters to undergo the ‘cut’.
The woman told the court that she made her daughters to undergo the ‘cut’ so as to avoid a family curse.
Recently, we reported how a medical doctor Dr. Tatu Kamau arguing before a three-judge bench implored the court to legalise female circumcision to allow people observe their culture and hygiene.
“There is nowhere in the Constitution that this dignity and respect is defined and how it should be done. It is left to individuals to interpret it. If an adult girl wants to be circumcised, then she should be left to do it and that should be respected,” she argued.
FGM is banned in Kenya under the Prohibition of Female Genital Mutilation Act, 2011 (FGM Act, 2011), which came into effect on 4 October 2011. It is a federal act and criminalises all forms of FGM, regardless of the age or status of a girl or woman.
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