Ekiti Community Officially Renounces Practice Of Female Genital Cutting (FGM/C)

This is great news! The people of Ilawe-Ekiti, Ekiti South West Local Government Area of Ekiti State, on Friday officially renounced the evil practice of Female Genital Cutting or Mutilation (FGM).

According to News Agency of Nigeria, Oba Adebanji Alabi, the Alawe of Ilawe-Ekiti, who is also the Chairman, Ekiti State Council of Traditional Rulers, described the act as unlawful and promised that the community would no longer be involved in the act.

Alabi spoke in Ilawe-Ekiti, during an event, organised by the state chapter of the National Orientation Agency (NOA), in conjunction with United Nations Children’s Education Fund (UNICEF) on FGM elimination. In his words:

“I want to declare today, on behalf of my people, that we will no longer be involved in the act of Female Genital Mutilation, because it is highly despicable and unlawful.

“Henceforth, it is now a taboo for anyone to do it to our kids. I am surprised that at this age people are still into this act that has sent many of our children to early grave; and even those that survived it, are left impotent.’’

READ ALSO: What Will Now Be Done To Nigerian Parents Who Still Indulge In Female Genital Mutilation In The UK

The state Director of NOA, Mr Dayo Famosaya, regretted that the FGM was on the increase in the state, especially in Ilawe community, describing it as an outdated act.

He assured that the agency would continue to collaborate with all relevant stakeholders in a bid to put an end to the menace in the state.

The UNICEF South West Consultant on FGM elimination, Mrs Aderonke Olutayo, disclosed that Ekiti State ranked third in FGM prevalence rate in the country.

Olutayo reiterated that the act was a violation of the fundamental rights of girls and women, and was compromising their health and psycho-social well-being. Olutayo said the state recorded about 72 per cent in the state, noting that female children between the ages of zero and 14 were victims.

The consultant also noted that some female teenagers and adults, even up to the marriageable age were also circumcised.

She identified cultural and traditional beliefs as being responsible for the practice pointing out that some people saw it as a family heritage which must not be stopped.

SEE ALSO: ‘A sharp razor blade was used. Me and my sister used diapers and bled for a week’ Kemi Olunloyo On Circumcision As A Little Girl

“Some of those who perform the genital mutilation are unskilled. They do it with primitive and unsterilised equipment and do damage to human parts.

The World Health Organisation had a law prohibiting this practice and it has been domesticated in Nigeria, particularly in Ekiti State. I want to appeal that the laws must be implemented to protect the lives of our women,” she said.

She advised the government to demonstrate more political will in ending the act, by making budgetary provisions that would enhance advocacy.

Nigeria ranks third among Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) practicing countries in the world.

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