'Defilement victims need justice'
25 September 2013, 16:25
Bungoma - Relatives and guardians of sexually abused children who resort to solving the cases locally are fueling child molestation in Bungoma County, a member of the Judiciary has said.
Speaking to members of the press, Sirisia Law Courts Senior Principal Magistrate, Francis Kiambia, blamed the local arrangements made by parents and the child molesters in the area, and revealed that it is a major impediment that has seen many defilement victims from the region not getting justice.
The magistrate, whose court serves the larger Bungoma West and Cheptais District, revealed that many defilement cases that have been brought before him have been jeopardised after the victims and witnesses failed to cooperate.
“Many defilement cases have been thrown out for lack of prosecution after the victims, who are the first witnesses, are compromised. Our courts of law depend on witnesses who include parents and guardians of the minors; if they have all decided to side with the accused persons, we can do nothing,” said Kiambia.
The magistrate said he has held talks with various police bosses in the area and asked them to bring to book the persons orchestrating the local arrangements in solving defilement cases, instead of reporting such cases to police.
He has also attended various public forums in Sirisia and Cheptais District- where Chepkukur Primary School, which hit the headlines after 18 pupils at the school fell pregnant is located- to sensitise locals.
“Defilement victims need justice; it is a gross violation of children rights for a parent to receive money or even a cow as compensation for defilement of their child. Such illegal acts have led to a sharp increase of underage pregnancies in Cheptais District,” he said.
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