5 mIllion persons are to be mobilised by the Federal Government and UNICEF in a movement tagged “ACT TO END FGM”, to end Female Genital Mutilation.
The 5 million people include adolescent; girls and boys, women, men, grand-parents, traditional, community and religious leaders.
Female genital mutilation (FGM) comprises all procedures that involve partial or total removal of the external female genitalia for non-medical reasons.
A practice that violates a person’s rights to health, security and physical integrity; the right to be free from torture and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment; and the right to life, in instances when the procedure results in death.
Currently, Nigeria ranks 3rd worldwide, on FGM practice, which necessitated the launch of the 5 million Nigerians Movement for Good Initiative to act to end FGM today in Abuja.
While there is a significant decrease of the practice, among girls/women aged 15-49 compared to 10 years ago (27% in 2011), the prevalence among girls aged 0-14 years is worryingly on the increase from 19.2% in 2011 to 25.3% in 2016.
UNICEF Child Protection Specialist on Harmful Practices, Ms Hadiza Abba made the aforementioned observation while speaking to Radio Nigeria on the Joint Programme initiated to eliminate female genital mutilation in 5 states of Nigeria where the practice is highly prevalent based on the 2013 NDHS.
The starts include; Osun (77%), Ebonyi (74%), Ekiti (72%), Imo (68%), and Oyo (66%).
Reporting by Nancy AnikaEzie; editing by Muzha Kucha