MAMA Centre Advocates community-led approach to end FGM, recounts dreadful impact
The Mothers And Marginalised Advocacy Centre (MAMA Centre) on the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation 2021, acknowledges efforts hitherto directed towards eliminating Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) practices in Nigeria; demands strict implementation of legal provisions and community-led approach to ensure compliance.
We commend recent amplified effort involving adoption of Violence Against Persons Prohibition (VAPP) Act targeted at eradicating Gender-Based Violence, FGM and other discriminatory practices against women and girls in Nigeria.
We at the same time, call for adoption and full implementation of the Act across all states of the Federation in demonstration of sincerity towards actualising Goal 5.3 of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, ratified to protect dignity, integrity, end Gender-Based Violence, and eliminate Female Genital Mutilation at all levels by 2030.
We demand targeted actions, integrated advocacy and unified fund to amplify and deepen awareness, especially at community levels where the practices continue unabated, to end Female Genital Mutilation, while calling for enhanced policy actions in stringent implementation of relevant legal provisions to sanction perpetrators and foster behavioural change.
While we stress our total discontent with FGM in all classified and unclassified forms, we are seriously concerned by its short and long term complications including risk of sexually transmission infections, complications of pelvic inflammatory diseases, Urinary Tract Infections, increased susceptibility to HIV/AIDS, among other dreadful repercussions that ultimately hampers mental health, healthy reproductive life and rights of women.
We are not unaware of the various studies exposing persistent practice of FGM in Nigerian communities, as enabled by harmful traditional norms and socio-cultural practices. We on this, further call for community-led approach that mainstreams traditional rulers, community/women leaders in mass education planning and process to end FGM practice.
Executive Director, MAMA Centre