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Wednesday, 18 December 2013

From childhood to adulthood

By James Maina

Upon the graduation of primary school pupils in their national exam, the next immediate step is preparation to join high school. The critical part of it is the vigorous circumcision of boys, a rite of passage that is normally undertaken in the month of December.

In multi-ethnic Wangwachi village, it has appeared that the same rite of passage is done on two fronts namely conservatisms that perform it on traditional system, and the Christians who have bound it on Christian doctrines.

All the Kalenjin initiates have been put together in various chosen places in the slopes of Nyakinyua Ridges.
“We feel that our children must tread along the same path as our ancestors did,” said Kipchirchir, One of those overseeing the event.

The Agikuyu however have taken two stands. Some have taken their candidates to churches and institutions offering circumcision on Christian backgrounds. Others have retained the initiates at homes where cultural education pertaining the said rite is administered.

Circumcision is believed to reduce the risk of developing a urinary tract infection (UTI) such as bladder infection. It also reduces the risk of getting some types of sexually transmitted infections such as H.I.V as well as reducing the risk of developing cancer of the penis.

Laikipia Rural Voices wishes all the candidates a happy time in the broad spectrum of adulthood. It also hopes that the new adults will be men of integrity, manifesting all the moral values that the wider society expects from them.
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