Wife of the Abia State Governor, Mrs Priscilla Otti

Abia First Lady Urges Collective Action to End Female Genital Mutilation

The Wife of the Abia State Governor Mrs Priscilla Otti has called on relevant stakeholders and men of goodwill to join hands with the government in the call to stop Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) practice. Mrs Otti made the call to commemorate the 2024 Day against female genital mutilation in Umuahia the state capital with the theme: HER VOICE, HER FUTURE: INVESTING IN SURVIVOR -LED MOVEMENT TO END FEMALE GENITAL MUTILATION.

 

Mrs Otti represented by the wife of the Deputy Governor, Mrs Chidera Emetu noted that Female Genital Mutilation is a total violation of the rights of women and the girl child that must be put to an end within the society. She stated that in Abia State, over twenty per cent of women and girls aged between fifteen to forty-nine years of age have undergone female genital mutilation and called on women to shun the ugly practice.

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In her welcome address, the Hon. Commissioner for Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, Mrs Ngozi Felix said that the United Nations statistics estimated that over sixty-eight million girls and young women globally are at risk of undergoing violation of their rights and integrity as a result of female genital mutilation practice. She noted that more cultural, clinical and scientific initiatives, as well as targeted political actions, are needed for a more efficient and widespread protection of the girl child and women against female genital mutilation.

 

In their separate contributions the Assistant Director, Ministry of Justice Abia State, Mrs Chidinma Alozie and a lecturer Department of Nursing Science Abia State University, Mrs Chizaram Onwusogh stressed that some of the adverse effect of FGM includes:  severe bleeding, problems urinating, complications in childbirth and increased risk of infections. She harped on the need for parents to reject the act of engaging their young girls in the practice of Female Genital Mutilation describing it as inhuman.

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Also speaking, the Traditional Ruler of Ajata na Igu Autonomous Community in Ikwuano Local Government Area, Eze Larry Ogbonna called on the people especially women to stand up and say no to the practice of Female Genital Mutilation on their young girls.

 

Some of the women in an interview commended the wife of the Governor for organizing the program and promised to take the message on the fight against female genital mutilation to their various homes and communities. Over 400 hundred women and secondary school girls drawn from the seventeen Local Government Areas of the state attended the program.

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Oluchi Franklin Oji
PRO