By Ademola Orunbon
The Ogun State Government has declared zero tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), in line with the United Nations’ declarations in eliminating the menace, which had been recognized internationally as a violation of human rights and declared as illegal.
The Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development, Hon. Oluwafunmilayo Efuwape, stated this in her keynote address to commemorate the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation, with the theme, “Unleashing the Power of Youths”, held at Yewa South Local Government Secretariat, Ilaro.
Hon. Efuwape, accompanied by the Special Adviser to the Governor on Women Affairs, Hon. Adijat Adeleye Oladapo, said it was a special day to raise campaign against the harmful traditional and cultural practice to eradicate it by 2030, explaining that the State had been one of the champions in the cause of eliminating FGM.
“I enjoined everyone, especially the youths, to explore all power within their capacity, social media inclusive, to end this act, just as they have been identified as a powerful tool towards fighting against every unjust in the world”, she said.
Earlier, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development, Dr. Oluranti Oladeinde, explained that female genital mutilation involved altering and injuring the female genital for non-medical reasons, as well as abuse of girls and women’s integrity.
“Girls who undergo female genital mutilation face short term complications such as; severe pain, shock, excessive bleeding, infection and difficulty in passing urine, as well as, long term consequences for their sexual and reproductive health and mental health”, she stated.
Oladeinde pointed out that coordinated and systematic efforts through sensitization on human rights, gender equality, sexual education and attention to the needs of women and girls who suffer from its consequences, were essential in promoting the elimination of genital mutilation, saying the Day focuses on mobilising youths and women to rise up against the harmful practice.
She appealed to people to support government in eliminating FGM, in order to free girls and women from any form of short term complications and long term consequences which could lead to mental problems.