The President of Kenya Uhuru Kenyatta, speaking to the Women Deliver conference in Vancouver, Canada, said he wants to see an end to Female Genital Mutilation by the end of his time in power in 2022.
Female Genital Mutilation has been against the law in Kenya since 2011 but the practice continues.
He told delegates attending Women Deliver in Vancouver that Kenya would make it compulsory for parents to send all children to primary and secondary school, which would boost girls’ opportunities and empower them to be future leaders.
He also said, Keeping girls in school would also prevent them being married off young.
According to global campaign group Girls Not Brides, More than one in five girls in Kenya gets wed before the age of 18 .
U.N. data shows 21% of girls and women in the country have been cut. The East African country is widely seen as a leader in efforts to tackle the internationally condemned practice.
According to the President, more women were being appointed to leadership roles in Kenya, but progress was sometimes hindered by cultural or religious opposition .
He further said, in Kenya’s National Assembly an equality bill, which stipulates that no one gender should have more than two thirds of seats in parliament.
While vowing to keep pushing for the law he said, “As a country, we cannot grow at the pace we desire to grow if we leave this huge segment of society out of decision making.”