The Federal Government , international community, key players, and non-governmental organizations have all pledged to put an end to Female Genital Mutilation (FGM).
The pledge was made in Abuja at the “Launch of the Movement for Good to End Female Genital Mutilation.”
Mrs Paullen Tallen, the Minister of Women Affairs, said female genital mutilation is terrible and must be eradicated.
She opined that with the pledges and dedication of traditional rulers, FGM may be abolished in Nigeria, adding that, the launch of the movement is a defining moment towards ending the menace.
According to her: “There is no way that Female Genital Mutilation can ever be properly done. It is condemnable. It is a crime against humanity and I pray that all of gathered here should leave this hall as ambassadors towards zero tolerance of FGM”.
“FGM is a traditional practice inflicted on girls and women worldwide and it is widely recognised as a violation of human rights, which is deeply rooted in cultural belief and perceptions over decades and generations. The procedure involves the total removal of the partial or total external female genital causing injuries to the female genital organ. In places where it is practiced, it is seen as a right of passage of the girl child to womanhood. And this is encouraged by family members in the fear and belief of social societal sanctions”.
“Science has proven that FGM jas no health benefit you the girl child.
” Statistics has shown that Nigeria has the highest number of cases of FGN in the world accounting for about one hundred and fifteen million out of one hundred and thirty million circumcised women worldwide. That south south zone with 77% amongst adult women has the highest prevalence practice in Nigeria. This is followed by the south east zone with 68% and the south west zone with 65%. The northern part of Nigeria also is not totally free this practice but is very very limited”, She stated.
She also stated that, out that eliminating FGM is crucial to realising many of the SDGs.
She , however, called for intensified advocacy to all the books and crannies of Nigeria.
Tallen added that the present administration knowing the dangers associated with FGM to women and girls is committed to ending it.
Also, the French Ambassador to Nigeria, Emmanuelle Blatmann, said that at least two hundred women worldwide have undergone genital mutilation and more might be affected in the coming years.
She said that FGN contravenes the rights of women.
“Indeed to promote the elimination of this scourge, coordinated and systematic efforts involving everyone are needed”. Blatmann said.
She noted that France has made the fight against FGN a priority of it’s feminist deplomacy.
In her remarks, the U.S. Ambassador to Nigeria, Ambassador Mary Beth Leonard stated that FGM harms women and girls across the continent and the US is working with its partners around the world to eliminate all forms of gender based violence including FGM.
She said that the US has been steadfast in its partnership with Nigeria.