Saturday 6 February 2016

Joining in the fight to eliminate Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)

Today is International day of zero tolerance to female genital mutilation (FGM), a day which started off in 2003 when the then First Lady of Nigeria, Stella Obasanjo declared Zero tolerance to female genital mutilation. FGM was banned in Nigeria last year and the practise was made a punishable offence.

The term 'female circumcision' reeks of deceit and a bid to disguise the wickedness of the act of mutilating a female's genitalia. Circumcision involves the removal of the foreskin of the penis. Clearly females have no penis therefore the term 'circumcision' does not apply. So instead of saying "I want to circumcise my daughter", tell yourself the truth that you want to mutilate her genitals. You want to make her less of who God made her to be. You want to deny her sexual satisfaction, you want to increase the risks she would face during childbirth, you want to deface her genitals so she would be ashamed of it. And despite its being banned, you want to take the extra risk of exposing your daughter to harm as only quacks now perform the mutilation. You also want to endanger her life as she could be exposed to diseases and may die as a result. You also want to serve time in prison as well.

 Female genital mutilation is simply parents' inhumanity to daughters. It serves absolutely no purpose and has no link with preservation of virginity, marriageability or cleanliness. Agreed, the practice is reduced and almost non-existent today, but another act which operates based on the same principle now thrives; suppression/massage of the clitoris. It is called "igba aka" in some parts of Igboland. I was at a primary health care center recently and a nurse, sorry a public health technician was teaching mothers of baby girls how to properly suppress the clitoris. It could be a lesser evil, but evil nonetheless. Let the female genitalia be for crying out loud.

 FGM could lead to infertility, maternal death, diseases and sexual dysfunction. It violates the rights of the girl child. Let us all join hands to end this practice which not only undermines the rights of females but also poses serious threats to their health, human rights and potentials.


  1. I really wish many parents will read this piece. It pains my heart seeing what we make the girl child go through. Thanks Chidimma for this piece. Your blog is really enlightening