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A CUT ABOVE THE REST: MALE CIRCUMCISION IN KENYA

Male circumcision - good for your health and good for your love life too?

A World Health Organization (WHO) report says Kenya accounts for over 50 per cent of men circumcised in 13 sub-Saharan African countries under the Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision programme (VMMC). Out of 555,022 circumcised men and boys, 327,479 were circumcised in Kenya. This is good news in the battle against HIV/AIDS and, apparently, good news for women’s sex lives.

The 13 sub-Saharan African countries of Botswana, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe were identified by WHO and the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS as priority areas for the programme because they have high rates of heterosexually transmitted HIV and low rates of male circumcision.

The WHO projects a reduction of HIV/Aids prevalence in these countries by 25 per cent and 20 per cent in women. This proportion of men circumcised would prevent over four million HIV infections in the focus countries by 2015.

“Kenya has made the most progress. With the figures cited, no other country has performed nearly as well”, said Jackson Kioko, Nyanza Director of Public Health and Sanitation. “The next largest number of circumcisions performed was in Zambia, with 16,800 circumcisions in 2009 and 6,200 in the last two months of the year, when Kenya performed 36, 000.” (See, ‘Kenya leads Africa in male circumcision’).

Kenya aims to have at least 84 per cent of males (up to 426,500) circumcised by 2013 at cost up to $56 million.

“SEX JUST BECAME BETTER” say Kenyan Women in Nyanza

The WHO report came barely two days after another survey dubbed The Effects of Male Circumcision on Women, revealed that Kenyan women whose male sexual partners are circumcised have reported an improvement in their sex life, as reported in The Star.

Women against HIV/Aids in Kenya (WOFAK) and The National Aids Control Council conducted the study on 200 partners of men in Kisumu who were recently circumcised and reported that nearly 78 per cent said their sex life had improved while about 22 per cent reported no change.

The “top reasons cited by women for their better sex life are improved hygiene, longer time for their partners to achieve orgasm and their partner wanting more frequent sex,” says Carol Odada, WOFAK’s principal investigator.

What do Kenya Forum readers think? Circumcision is good for your health: is it good for your love life too?

The late Christabel talks about Dr Ouko’s return from Washington.

Sam Okello talking about Mrs Ouko

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