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Nigeria: Fighting Female Genital Mutilation

Nigeria: Fighting Female Genital Mutilation
Photo by UNICEF HK- Ask Nigeria

Steps are being taken to sensitize the people on the hazards of FGM.

Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is a traditional procedure that overtly violates the sexual rights of the female gender. It is a culturally-motivated practice that involves removing the external part of the female genitalia for arbitrary reasons with no health benefit. An archaic practice, it is known to inflict injuries to the female genital organ. Statistically, over 200 million females are estimated to have undergone the FGM procedures in 31 countries, 80 percent of these victims said to be in Africa.

Contextually, Nigeria has the third highest FGM victimization, with over 25 percent of Nigerian women and girls with ages ranging between 15 to 49, haven experienced a form of genital mutilation. Though, Nigeria’s Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act declares it illegal, this cultural process is still habitually practiced across the country. Several governmental and non-government platforms are lending their voices to educate people about the dangers of this practice, one of which is the Center for Social Values and Early Childhood Development (CESVED), a non-profit organization overseen by Gift and Abu Augustine.

It is important to sensitize people on the perils of female circumcision.

Numerous organizations are actively working towards eradicating this practice in the different parts of Nigeria— making material and educational provisions to sensitize the people of these affected communities of the need to evolve from this archaic practice that is posed to harm women. The Value Female Network educate communities in Osun state, providing necessary materials to victims of female genital mutilation and other gender-based violence. Society for the Improvement of Rural People also base their sensitization program around communities in Ebonyi and Enugu states, in a bid to exterminate this gender-based violence.

Gift and Abu Augustine in 2011, commenced an anti-FMG organization in Cross-River state, to create awareness about the dangers that the genital mutilation practice poses, prompting the cultural leaders to end this practice. Also, Mabel Inah, a health worker at the Agwagune primary health center has taken it upon herself to educate pregnant women and nursing mothers of the perils associated with these genital mutilations. Inah, avers that it is very important that we take necessary steps as a society to sensitize ignorant people of the perils that female circumcision poses.

Gift recognizes factors that have clogged this sensitization process.

Gift and Abu’s anti-FGM activism was heralded by Gift’s discovery of FMG-related scars on women, while as a nurse of a public hospital in Keffi, Nasarawa State. She observed the different and severe complications that women suffer at childbirth which sometimes led to death, as a result of these genital mutilation procedures. She asserted that upon her research on this subject, she started to talk about the practice which have long become trivialized. CESVED, founded by Gift and Augustine, organizes campaigns across communities in Cross-River, in a bid to change their perception of the subject.

Although, there has been successful steps forward in some communities, Gift recognizes that there are factors that have clogged this sensitization process. The cultural preservation of this practice in numerous communities stands as a real problem. The non-profit organization has witnessed the problem of some communities still holding on to this cultural practice. Gift asserts that the culture construct of many communities are still weaved around this practice, where families are denied privileges and leadership positions for refusing to let their daughters be circumcised. She further noted the cases of physical assault that the team have been victims to, in the course of their sensitization.

VAPP ACT must be domesticated and properly implemented to eradicate FGM.

However, the Nigerian government, through FGM policies, have also been immensely helpful in eradicating this act that evidently violates human rights. Through the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act (VAPP. ACT) in 2015, the government criminalized this practice and though Cross River state adopted this law in 2021, there have been no convictions which shows the government’s complacency at eradicating this vile practice. However, while this VAPP ACT have been assented in 29 states in Nigeria, Gift, avers that the states must domesticate this act, ensuring that it is properly implemented to curb gender-based violence in Nigeria.


Related Links

UNICEF: Website

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26 comments
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Ask Nigeria
17 days ago

Nigeria: Fighting Female Genital MutilationSteps are being taken to sensitize the people on the hazards of FGM.Express your point of view.

Yomii
Member
16 days ago

Our local mentality is doing us more harm than good because how are people still getting involved in this act in 2022. The government should create awareness for these people so they will be educated.

Taiwoo
Member
16 days ago

The cultural preservation of this practice is a significant challenge for a number of different groups due to the fact that a large number of people regard it as something of the utmost importance.

Godsewill Ifeanyi
Member
16 days ago

As a result of these genital mutilation surgeries, women have a variety of severe difficulties during childbirth, some of which can even result in death. It needs to be stopped.

SarahDiv
Member
16 days ago

The Female Genital Mutilation should be stopped completely. This is only exposing the female to infections because this practice is always done in an hygienic manner. The Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act (VAPP. ACT) should be promoted to prohibit every forms of female genital Mutilation. Government enforce the law against such practices to eradicate it completely from our society.

DimOla
Member
16 days ago

The reasons for Female Genital Mutilation are unjustifiable. Imaging someone saying the female will not engage in extra-marital affairs, the female will not be promiscuous, it is based on culture and traditions of the land. All these reasons are baseless and will only endanger the life of female. The sensitisation that is currently going will further inform and enlightening the men and more especially the women about the danger of Female Genital Mutilation.

Remi1
Member
16 days ago

It is of the utmost importance that we, as a community, make the necessary efforts to educate uneducated people about the dangers that are associated with female circumcision.

Iyanu12345ogg
Member
16 days ago

Female genital mutilation serves no benefit to a girl rather has disadvantages like infection and disease. People need to be sensitized about the danger and life threatening that arises from FGM. Community should be enlightened too.

Last edited 16 days ago by Iyanu12345ogg
Kazeem1
Member
16 days ago

The maintenance of this tradition’s cultural significance in a large number of communities presents a significant challenge that we must overcome in order to make females’ lives better.

Nwachukwu Kingsley
Member
16 days ago

We need to abolish this evil act, these people that practice it needs to be drilled with proper orientation that will enlighten them enough to know that this act is bad

Last edited 16 days ago by Nwachukwu Kingsley
AN-Abiodun
Member
16 days ago

Most people are still practicing this act out of ignorance or they are still holding on to some myth.

This act really exposes the victim to a lot of harm and health risk.

The VAPP ACT must be thoroughly implemented to put an end to this.

Ultra0711
Member
16 days ago

Am surprised to hear some people still engage in this bad act in this 21st century, they needs to be enlightened to forgone this antiquated culture of female genital mutilation that bring about nothing but danger to the victim.

Hassan Isa
Member
16 days ago

Forums of both governmental and non-governmental should be contributing their voices to the effort to educate people about the risks associated with this outdated practice.

Chibuzor
Member
16 days ago

This inhumane and antiquated procedure is believed to cause damage to the female vaginal organ, and no one deserves to endure such suffering.

Khalifa001
Member
16 days ago

To stop this act we all have to work as one and for some people it there culture it being there with them from the start so how do we explain and stop this? It can only be achieved by working together as one

Mercy unisex saloon
Member
16 days ago

This is not only the job of the government but rather everyone. People must be educated about the danger and life threatening infection and disease that arises from female genital mutilation. The procedure serve no benefits to the girl but rather endangered her life. We as community should educate anyone who still believes in the practice and help them abolished the practice. Gift and Abu Augustine are champions.

Tonerol10
Member
16 days ago

the practice, traditional in some cultures, of partially or totally removing the external genitalia of girls and young women for non-medical reasons. It is illegal in many countries.
Key facts. Female genital mutilation (FGM)involves the partial or total removal of external female genitalia or other injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons.

AN-Usman
Member
16 days ago

To get this act stopped all around it needs the support of everybody in the society and will take a little while cause of the firm cultural believe some communities are still holding to but hopefully with the help of the sensitization and enlightenment the illegal and bad act will be eradicated fully in no time.

Abusi
Member
16 days ago

This is a violation of women’s right. Female genital mutilation is a discrimination against women. It contravenes their freedom and liberty. The FGM also have adverse effects on them. The cultural or traditional reason for this barbaric act against women has to stop. We are in the 21at century, we also need to evolve in our culture and lifestyle

theApr
Member
16 days ago

All these barbaric unhealthy tradition needs to stop already. So many harmful superstitious beliefs in the name of culture. Hopefully the sensitization help stop all of these.

Bola12
Member
16 days ago

Women may experience chronic pain, chronic pelvic infections, development of cysts, abscesses and genital ulcers, excessive scar tissue formation, infection of the reproductive system, decreased sexual enjoyment and psychological consequences, such as post-traumatic stress disorder. This is totally disheartening and should be stopped.

Tolaniiii
Member
16 days ago

People need to join forces with gift and Augustine in order to spread the word about how dangerous this FGM is. The only thing that can help right now is enlightening people and making them understand how dangerous the FGM is to ladies.

Haykaylyon26
Member
16 days ago

People should be sensitized about the FGM so they can know the danger and consequences that is involved it might also help to reduce or eradicate it. A way to eradicate this should be create to stop it, woman that go through FGM go through pain and bleeding. The law to eradicate it should be proper implement

Adesanyaj72
Member
16 days ago

The world is advancing and I think people should also do the same. They really need to start dropping harmful and unhealthy superstitions and beliefs. This FGM is totally harmful and causes complications during childbirth. I don’t think anything that’s harmful should be allowed in the country.

Christiana
Member
16 days ago

Almost all women who have undergone FGM experience pain and bleeding as a consequence of the procedure. The event itself is traumatic as girls are held down during the procedure. Considering the consequences attached to the FGM I believe it should be totally abolished, and those that refuse to stop the act should be punished.

jdpumping
Member
16 days ago

Female genital mutilation is a very common practise in Africa and especially in Nigeria because it is cultural norm to.most parts and most of these young girls mutilated suffers various health damages later,but with more enlightenment by government and NGO’s there has been little reduction but more needs to be done in order to eradicate it successfully

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