By Timothy Wekesa

As Kenya approaches it’s 60 years of independence, patriotic men and women are adversely being recognized and rewarded.

Unlike other years, this year’s Mashujaa Day celebrations were held in Kirinyaga before counties continued awarding their notable heroes and heroines.

In Bungoma county, a woman who used to perform female genital mutilation emerged as one of Kenya’s heroes.

Juliana Chebor says she used to sustain her family through income from the practice before she learnt of it’s effects to young girls and had to quit to become a christian.

“I used to circumcise girls three times a year: in April, August and December,” she told journalists.

Juliana also pointed out that she had not received civic education and that is why she believed in it.

“I now understand that FGM causes complications at pregnancy as it blocks the smooth passage of the child,” she said.

She adds that once a girl undergoes FGM, culture demand that she gets married, a norm she terms as archaic and wayward.

“This costed many in terms of civilization as they could not continue with their studies hence many never achieved their goals,” she said.

Juliana is now leading other women in the fight against Female Genital Mutilation, a step which has earned her a reward as a hero across the country.

She now educates women and girls in collaboration with churches and Government what has caused FGM practice to start diminishing in Mount Elgon, Bungoma county.

Bishop Calistus Barasa of the interfaith community also received the heroes award. 

The colourful ceremony was presided over by Bungoma county commissioner Samuel Kimiti who asked them to continue with their efforts in making Kenya better.


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