Forum for Understanding: Science (Discussion about medicine and culture)




НазваниеForum for Understanding: Science (Discussion about medicine and culture)
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<&/>various voices simultaneously

<$C> Well I would say yes from the pastoral point of view here is where now in the churches and other religious bodies if there is a quarrel something in the home people should always first of all try to reconcile They can even come to the churches where they belong and they go there and case Here is where also we call people of good will This is where we call the relatives and parents and other people to come in and try to have this couple trying you know to solve their problem first of all before you even start talking of divorce or of separation So here is also where we ask the people in marriage themselves to remember their marriage vows and how they are to love each other in life all through so we try to renew or rather they should try to renew these facts so that communication is not lost You see we talk of people being one in body one in heart one in mind so we have to be uh one in mind that you want to make a home together therefore be reasonable people talk plan together do things together Marriage is not does not belong to one person in an in the home It's for the two people so you must necessarily therefore be able to have unity uh So this is why we that say if people are quarrelling and fighting and so on then please come go to where your religious aspect is go to see your walimu wa dini go to see your pastors and others sit down try to reconcile It may take even days and days and days But we pray and hope even with the help of God that you move out of your present difficulties

<$B> The other thing I would like to put you is that uh you know uh when a man and a woman meet and they <-/>they <-/>they <-/>they <-/>they plan to have a home for sure they're not from one father one <-/>one mother and so they're <-/>they're <-/>they're bound uh <-_>they're bound<-/> to differ once and again So the only thing I'd like to say here is that at least one has to be patient

<$?> Well

<$B> and one has to tolerate a lot we <-/>we one has to learn how to be a bit tolerant so <-/>so <-/>so that uh at least the <-/>the home can be a place for each one of them to live in with Otherwise if they're both crashing then it doesn't matter how much they talk there will be no solution

<$A> I'm just wondering uh Dr Gatere in your profession if in the process of looking at patients or not necessarily patients as they're sick but uh they need help people who really need help may come to you Is there any way you can forestall a divorce down the road Is there any way you could see the seed before it really germinates and uh if there is a way maybe you could just enunciate on some of these that you've seen or possible cases before it really germinates and you have a problem down the road

<$E> Uh that's a good question we do <-/>do that all the time We try to forestall this and then abort it as it were before it uh blossoms and that is the objective of uh we in counselling The idea really being that one we want to find out the kind of personalities these individuals really possess Let me say that uh many people don't uh disagree marriage because of a thing called love Love is not much of an issue if <-/>if they <-/>they <-/>they that's not a real cause of trouble but there are many other causes of trouble Personality differences are major and uh these many times are not even discussed by the pastors in church They <-/>they just want to have you agreed to <-/>to do you love this one do you love the other one when you discover you know that these people are going to get on all right I think you have to assume something But I think these days there should be a pre-marriage counselling in order to assist people about their personalities to find out whether they're the kind of people who can get on at all so that the gap is not too big and <-/>and here I'm talking about uh basic attitudes because basic attitudes determine behaviour and if the attitudes are so very very different in a manner that is very difficult to bring them together you start with problem right from beginning The other thing is culture You see people come from different backgrounds and in marriage we don't again bother to find out what are the beliefs values customs and uh language to express them of a given person from their background and it is cultures that refuse to marry It is not heights or that problem or complexion white or black It's not even uh the question of uh say from one tribe or another It because people even from different tribes may have uh <./>dic one culture like most people are these days so I think the issue culture is another important

<$A> Now just being the devil's advocate are you in any way encouraging or have sympathy with cases where maybe prevalent in the west so to speak of trial marriages

<$E> No not at all I do not uh uh advocate that at all I think trial marriages is an admission of failure rather than anything else I think uh we must not really stoop that low to help humanity We have to set good standards and aim at those standards That's why I'm saying let's look at deeper issues and advise uh people before they marry but not tell them enter into a trial marriage and then find out when you're in

<$A> Now just very quickly from uh your end when divorce must occur what are the stages Does the court just listen for six months or one year and decide we've listened long enough you suffered you must divorce What happens

<$D> I think the most important point here is that the court does not hurry to declare to declare a marriage uh dissolved The reason is that uh the society is made of family units Those family units form a society the totality of these family units form a society When the petition is filed uh for a divorce the petitioner of the person who wants the divorce has to prove the grounds to the satisfaction of the court and even then the court does not hurry either even when it is <./>con it is satisfied that the divorce should be granted it will go into <-/>into two stages One it will issue a decree nisi at the first stage and give the parties another chance to think over it so the court may say uh we hereby issue the order of decree nisi uh It will be made absolute say up to three months or six months In those six months or three months the parties are supposed to think whether they should go ahead with making the marriage absolutely uh dissolved or not That time the parties have a chance not to terminate the marriage If nothing happens after the period given by the court then the one of the parties moves the court to make that decree nisi absolute After that the marriage is dissolved If anyone of those want to live up together then they have to remarry

<$A> and

<$D> go back to church

<$A> And what a sad way to end today's programme Well the basic message is that there is hope In this particular programme we looked at divorce in terms of grounds that are admissible so to speak in court or grounds that can be used to present one's case when you're seeking divorce if it really must come to it We've had inputs from Dr Gatere Mrs Kakwagi Father Kinuthia and Mr Kironi In the next and other programmes we'll seek to look at the effects of divorce because the two parties who are really seeking divorce my view is that uh we wouldn't mind so much them but then the other people the defendants the children the society they may have a bigger problem and exactly what the problem is and how to live with it will be the topic in other programmes of Hotline Thank you for watching us




S1B034K

<&_><$A> Loise Wamyoike

<$B> Josephine Sinyo

<$C> James Mwaura

<$D> Lucy Mandera

<$E> Mrs Anastasia Mwangi

continued from S1B037K



<$A> And what does the law say against about such abuses violence against women

<$B> Uh the <-/>the <-/>the <-/>the law position the position in law is that in every violence case may it be defilement to a child may it be rape the one who has been offended the <-/>the culprit you know the victim is the one to prove the case And that's what I'd <-/>I'd tried to say here that for a blind woman it's difficult You see you have to go and report to the police you have to go and have a medical check-up you have to go it is you expected to do all these things yet it's the very very you who has been traumatised And most often than not the blind woman will not be able to follow all these you know bureaucracies and so our cases are hardly reported even when we have been violated

<$E> I think I should add on that when it comes to the crucial you know part of identifying the person What are you know how are you supposed to identify the you know the uh <-/>the <-/>the you know <-/>the person who has committed the uh <-/>the crime You are supposed to identify the person you know s- you have to use your visual and maybe you have to identify the voice she has talked of changing the voice and now what is left is what you have to identify using your eyes and when now the sight is not there then your case is just gone Even if you have all gone through all that problems of going to report to the police medical check-up and all that but you are not able to identify the person you know it is really frustrating and instead of going through all that hassle many decide just to shy off

<$E> And in fact I'd comment on that Uh one might even decide not even to talk so how do you identify the voice He may just have decided to abuse her and then off he goes So you wouldn't really even have that time to talk I mean that he'll talk and you'll maybe recall his voice

<$C> Are you sometimes forced to use the sense of uh smell to identify people or things

<$B> Well I think that that's not uh really to the effect of criminal cases like now when it comes to violence against the woman The issue here is that when that offence has been committed if you can't identify using your sight there is always the aspect of having witnesses you know corroborators who'd be able to <-/>to strengthen your case for that matter but the <-/>the fact I'm again trying to hammer is that when you're blind even the witnesses you would say you'd have access to you didn't see them around the incident so you'd not even have any witnesses So your case would just be thrown out And that's the point we are trying to put here that We want the public to be aware that we are very vulnerable and we hate being taken advantage of and I'm using that word being taken advantage of because people have <-/capitualised> on this for a very long time And in some cases it doesn't even have to be rape that it's lack of consent by force sexual offences would be even by <-/>by misrepresentation you know and because the society have always dejected us if not rejected us you'll find our women grow up even without knowing what are the real essence of sex such that they are abused they know it is sex but they don't know what it will tantamount to such that you find some of us be end up being single parents not that they want it because you see when you are dumped at home you are not exposed to many of these things So those who see you say oh that that take advantage of your purity and you end up having a child because the man knows what he is doing and the woman maybe you really don't you are just naive You see it's sight that will expose you to reading materials to seeing what people do copying how they walk how they talk but when you are blind and you are just dumped there you really become naive

<$E> Yeah Loise we continue we hear the many problems which are faced by the blind people and in this in this case the blind women and that's why I was trying to say you know when we come now we really for any problem we have to have an intervention and for this women's workshop for the blind women we are really hoping that all these issues we'll have a lot of uh life experiences sharing and because we'll be all women we'll have we'll try to encourage one another to share even what we have never shared with uh with friends so that these issues come out and by coming out we even learn there are worst things we have never had which have ever happened so I'm trying to bring in the workshop the national the national workshop for the blind women as an intervention to give opportunities to the women to share and even learn more on how really they can avoid or really handle such problems

<$A> And apart from the blind women who will be attending this workshop who else will be attending it maybe from other spheres <./>national nationally

<$E> Okay

<$A> Other spheres of development

<$E> Okay what we have done we have drawn the resource people from uh a <-/>a cross section of maybe professionals we have uh people <-/>people who are coming from different NGOs We have invited for instance uh women NGOs leaders who are going to come and uh maybe enlighten the women on how to be members of different women organisations for instance I have in mind an organisation like Young Women's Christian Organisation we have invited the general secretary to come and share with the blind women because you will find such an organisation is for the women but we do not have handicapped women or really say in this case blind women being members yet They have a right to it they you know it's for them but they really don't know and they are not aware of it some of them so we have called uh resource people like those we have also called resource people from uh an NGO like AAWRD this is Association for African Women for Research and Development They are coming to tell us a lot of things they have researched on women and also gather from the blind women really what are the issues which they have also not attended to they have never thought of so we have invited resource people from a cross section of you know uh various professions <./>be besides the areas uh the disability organisations Otherwise we have also have a lot of uh disability issues which are going to be discussed and the <./>recei resource people will come from those organisations

<$B> And to add we and to add to that also you see as participants we <-/>we felt it was really fit to give an environment of the blind women to have confidence in themselves This is the first seminar of its kind and it's just really necessary that the women are alone to have that self-realisation self-actualisation self-worth such that the next time now we'll have another one to integrate or if by chance they have the chance to integrate or relate with other organisations They have had that sharing aspect from their counterparts because if we were to have a combined seminar you bring maybe the sighted fifty-fifty I tell you there is always that withdrawal because through the system of education we have gone through we have always had segregation and we have never interacted in with the society so instead of the women opening up and really exposing and sharing their problems they would shy off so for the participants it's good that we just have a blind women such that we get that identity that confidence and thereafter even as they go out it will be now a milestone it's a stepping stone but when they go out it'll be a milestone

<$E> It's like an eye-opener for the women and we expected the next time we'll move a step further and be able possibly to integrate an I think it is just an eye-opener and we really had also to give the opportunity to these women who have never even had a chance to meet a colleague you know for over maybe ten years after primary school dropped out so we are trying to also bring them to share a lot of life experiences after they maybe they left school or one who has never gone to school so it's an opportunity we would be limiting them if we really at the initial stage started bring in the sighted women so we are beginning with them give some you know they <-/>they build some confidence they aware of what goes on then the next workshop will be now fairly integrated

<$C> Definitely it's imperative that uh when participants go out of that uh workshop they should believe they should leave with something written

<$E> <-/>Aha

<$C> Do you expect the resource people to come in with written material for both the blind and the sighted

<$E> Okay what we <-/>we normally do is the resource people bring printed materials you know but we have uh to transcribe the written materials in prints to Braille form and we have those facilities so the participants will get the Braille form of the handouts And that facilities available

<$A> Now I take it that this workshop will be sort of empowering the those who will be attending so that they can do <-/>do much more than they've been doing for themselves their families and even their colleagues after this workshop One area of concern especially for uh disabled women generally is that of employment and this uh sort of workshop maybe will help them to maybe think of something that they can do for themselves Maybe you could talk about this further Sinyo or Mandera how these blind women especially could be empowered so that they could even search an income-generating activity for themselves without necessarily going to look for a job in an office

<$D> Uh I think you are right because blind women you can do quite a lot as I've said earlier on and not necessarily in the office as for like this workshop we are going to have now we'll talk and <-/>and find out try to find out what each can do ash you know maybe <-/handworks> and such like things for example there is a <-/>a group called Kenya Blind Women Association which as blind women me being one of them Josephine and some others who are not here we sat down and thought that we could start a project self-help-project which could help these uh blind women to earn their bread so we started off with a uh uh I think with those one machine which one blind woman had then she started making the <-/>the sweaters you know knitting the <-/>the cardigans then from there we got some six more machines from uh no two more first from American Embassy then six more form ILO so right uh now we have six ladies who are blind and they are knitting very nice sweaters and those ones they're getting themselves their bread and with that project now we can still go out when we meet these others in the seminar talk to them there are some who can do very wonderful kiondos some can even make mats Some can make other things So if we find that there's people with that skills we can still try and see what they can do they can start their own small projects they can come together start a group maybe of <-/>of even selling things like or such like things so it would be very very necessary for us uh when we are meeting these ladies because we will know what they can do and they can start off their own projects

<$A> Unfortunately we seem to have run out of time but very very quickly Sinyo uh you could tell us uh other areas of concern especially for blind women apart from the area of employment families and communities support before we wind up our programme

<$B> Well well I <-/>I like the <-/>the area of <-/>of marriage I mentioned somewhere in a seminar as to how as blind women we also feel and it is a right we are eligible to being married and to inherit property of our husbands but you know the <-/>the crowd laughed they said you mean even you people think of yourselves as capable of being married I want to appeal to the members of the public that even a blind woman is a beautiful woman And she is a beautiful woman without sight

<$A> Uh that's all we had for you in Radio Press Conference tonight whereby we focused on the forthcoming National Women's Workshop which will focus on awareness and sensitisation for blind women our guests were Lucy Mandera a telephone operator with an international company here in Nairobi and we also had with us uh Josephine Sinyo who is a lawyer and a senior state counsel at the Attorney-General's Office Chambers both women are blind and they were accompanied to our studios by Anastasia Mwangi who is the rehabilitation officer Women and Family Support Programme of the Kenya Society for the Blind With me at the panel has been

<$C> James Mwaura

<$A> and I am Loise Wamyoike




S1B035K

<&_><$A> Goro Kamau

<$B> Mr Musalia

<$C> Ezekiel Espisu



<$A> For definition I think we'll take that one for as our premises and move on to the other present issues We <-/>we are living in a society that as we as I said is in a in a state of crisis We these are the days of structural adjustment These are days of inflation These are days of women's lib and these are days when the society is <./>wit witnessing an unprecedented high level of uh divorce amongst couples So I would like to ask Mister Musalia to tell us what these economic especially the economic from the economic perspective the <-/>the nature of the <-/>the difficulties the family unit is facing

<$B> Uh one thing we have to know that we are living as you've said in a dynamic society in a dynamic world and a world that is interwoven with the other uh areas like for example Kenya as it were uh is not in isolation Those policies that enacted by countries like say these superpowers the Americans uh uh the Europeans they have a very direct uh effect on uh a family unit uh in this country One thing maybe we should look at first is the structural adjustment uh programs that have been uh uh proposed by the International Monetary Fund in order to bring faster economic development uh in the developing countries Now structural adjustment uh essentially is a uh has been prescribed by IMF to the Third World uh and in essence it's uh both the institutional and structural uh <./>a adjustment within the countries that will have to increase at the productive capacity of the economy One thing that comes very quickly to mind is uh the uh the increase uh the <-/>the increased government expenditure within the economy should be reduced and then uh the other thing is that uh most of the government expenditures in terms of uh hospital education uh should be actually be reduced the minimal level so that the economy can be self-sustaining in the long run

<$C> Yeah when you talk about the reduction of the government expenditure on human resource management facilities I would just like to add on that actually the effect it has on the family could be drastic You know normally the government rarely as <-/>as it comes to grips with the IMF structural adjustment programs it rarely reduces such <-/>such prices for basic facilities like health like education it's always going on the rise and this could have an untold effect on the family in that the family now is forced to generate more income from other quarters to cater for what was being subsidised for by the government if you look at the idea of cost-sharing in schools in <-/>in health centres even in our major hospitals like Kenyatta in Nairobi the effect is being felt

<$A> Uh thank you thank you there for that contribution I think uh we <-/>we should focus on this more <-/>more closely because I <-/>I think it is uh the <-/>the other crux of the of the problem we are discussing today because now if <-/>if <-/>if we take structural adjustment in a well in another crude way as a government withdrawal from funding you know the infrastructure of uh some the infrastructure I think uh what we are seeing is that uh the uh family or the <-/>the <-/>the <-/>the society is at a very vulnerable level because now you where you didn't worry about uh how to send your <./>child son to university for example now the <-/>the family has to find ways of <-/>of meeting these Well the <-/>the implications are of course diverse and we may not go into that but uh specifically are the are the <-/>the <-/>the <-/>the or focusing on these economic difficulties I would like us to <-/>to look for example how they affect for example the <-/>the continuous if we take the family unit as Julie has said that is the basic unit of the of the of the of the <-/>the society Now how <-/>how <./>doe do these economic difficulties for example affect decisions for example when a man is going to get married when he is not going to get married of course we have to look at the at the cultural basis and you find that traditionally in our societies and this is a habit that is going on even up to now

<$B> Uh maybe

<$C> maybe going to be adjusted by these programs

<$A> all right

<$B> Maybe before we bring in the uh cultural uh dimension we also have to realise that the family as it were besides being the unit of <./>pr <./>po <./>pro procreation is also uh uh consumption unit is a unit that consumes whatever is made and this that it consumes is also what this structural adjustments are adversely affecting for example say uh when the uh when the IMF uh comes up and says that okay you have to withdraw uh all the government all the price controls and then uh you see the prices will be left on to the <-/>the demand and supply It's the demand and supply that will have to <-/>to <-/>to establish at what price uh some commodity will go And you see when those now when the two forces come together and determine the price you'll definitely have to see that the price will be above the reach of many of the families so the families now will have to <./>su <./>su to go scrambling I mean go looking for more to supplement the meagre resources uh it has at its disposal and that one is creating a lot of strain uh on the family as you have uh we can't rule out the factor of divorce for example

<$A> Yeah basically Mister Musalia what you are saying has a lot of weight in it in that it is right what you are saying that these subprograms actually are creating poverty within the family and how it relates to the continuation of the family we could look at it it's though it might be hypothetical but it could have some meaning in it that now there is a situation where a man people may not even be able to marry because as we know Africans basically believe in the social exchange theory and when you come to things like bride wealth where you have to have the necessary the <-/>the capability to marry you might not be able to marry if you are not able to generate that enough income or

<$B> Now what I would think uh Mister Espisu uh is that you see we can't really say people will not marry per se people will have to circumvent the marriage uh uh idea

<$A> yeah

<$B> and then they try to <./>im <./>impl implant their own idea Say for example now instead of going to the parents I just tell a <-/>a lady now because things are too hard and too difficult Why don't you come so that we can <&/>laughter I mean you see that one you'll have uh <./>circum you'll have short-circuited a long process and you see by the way parents who will not come to you to ask for so much when you're ready uh are staying with a lady you see that In fact they will help you to do with the little you have so that maybe you have the legal basis of your marriage

<$A> Oh thank you I think at that point what we maybe should look at is uh especially is the is the cultural element that you are bringing in and how for example has the International Monetary Fund and the world bank when they prescribe structural adjustment do they take into account our cultural basis our cultural systems Or is this is <-_>is this<-/> sabotaged because at one point the <-/>the crisis is this at one point we say that as Africans as Kenyans we would like to perpetuate our Kenyan identity our cultural values now we also have to contend with the structural adjustment which is been prescribed by from an outer culture another culture that is not ours

<$B> So maybe if I can just uh point something out of that you see these are people who are in New York and these are white men and uh I really don't think if they take into consideration the cultural uh aspect of it because one thing if they would take into consideration the cultural aspect of it then we will not having <&/>grammar uh structural adjustment in the in the <-/>the first place

<$A> Yeah what you are saying could have a lot of relevance because basically anthropologists have always argued that you know for development to be there it has to take to take note of the culture of the people it's going to develop otherwise then that development will be in vain if it's not cut out for the interest of the people at hand and here the problem is that these people who are prescribing the medicine for us are not those who know what we are suffering from But they assume they basically assume they know that these policies are right for these people It's not necessarily what they assume is right for <-/>for us could be Like say if have the established projects in the rural areas that don't really benefit the family at all The family the family looks at them with a lot of suspicion

<$B> You see one thing you have also to understand the structural adjustment are meant to bring change or <-/>or <./>go good times in the long run but in the short run definitely uh people even us we see right now people are suffering But you see how shall we stay to that long run to know that these policies will bring the desired effect that
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