Police in Lamu County have come to the rescue of a class 7 girl that had been married to a 40- year old adult man.
The suspect by the name Peter Munene Njau from Ndeu village, Hindi Division, was arrested on Sunday morning by the police following a tip off from the angry residents. The news of his arrest was confirmed by the Lamu County Police Commander Mr. Moses Murithi.
It is reported that the parents of the 17 year old girl forcefully approved her marriage to the elder man. However, on realizing that the marriage plans did not materialize as planned, the parents took off and went into hiding to escape the law enforcers that were after them.
“Acting on a tip off, my officers stormed the home where the 17 year old girl had been married. They arrested one Peter Munene Njau who had been living with the ,minor as his wife in a marriage planned by parents. The man is currently in police cell. We are processing him for court. We are also looking for the parents who are on the run.” Stated Mr. Murithi.
The visibly angry police boss further warned men against marrying under age girls and promised to take serious actions on such rogue men.
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Cases of minors getting married off to elder men are common in Kenya, with parents of such minors contributing highly. In most cases, these parents normally cite economic hardship and they marry their girls off hoping to be liberated financially by these men. As a result, this peculiar habit has seen many under age girls drop out of schools due to pressures from the parents.
However, marrying a girl under the age of 18 is considered defilement by the Kenyan constitution and such perpetrators are normally brought to book.