… says 51% prevalent ratio unacceptable
The Imo state government has expressed its commitment to end feminine genital mutilation/cutting in the state. This position was made known by the wife of the Imo state governor, Mrs. Nkechi Rochas Okorocha at a one day policy dialogue with National Orientation Agency (NOA), with support from UNICEF which had the theme “Ending female genital mutilation is a political decision”.
According to her, the state government has passed a law, banning Female Genital Mutilation / cutting (FG.M/C) in all the 637 autonomous communities in the state.
Mrs. Okorocha submitted that this practice is inhuman, archaic, barbaric and uncivilized and called on all well meaning citizens of the state to desist from such ugly practice.
The wife of the governor dismissed FGM/C as uncharitable and against all known cultural norms in the society, stressing that the state government would enforce the law against this practice to its logical conclusion. According to her, this practice does not fall in line with all known Igbo culture.
“This is unacceptable, nobody has the right to say that girls must be circumcised, as not doing so exposes them to sexual promiscuity. There is no supportive proof to substantiate this claim”.
“FGM/C is not part of our culture because it dehumanizes and brutalizes our young girls as it is a wicked act”.
The wife of the governor revealed that the state government would liaise with the Community Government Council (CGC) and traditional rulers to exterminate the harmful practice.
Mrs. Okorocha commended the commitment of citizenry to the elimination of the practice for their doggedness, dismissing it as an ill wind that blows no one any good.
She however stressed that the state was rated 51% on FGM/C last year, according to her, the state government’s policy of “Health at Your Door Steps would soon eradicate this obnoxious practice.
Speaking, the Speaker of the State House of Assembly – Rt. Hon. Acho Ihim, decried the pains, diseases and challenges associated with the practice and assured that the state legislature would ever remain a partner in progress in the onslaught against the scourge.
“Whoever tries it again will go to jail because we cannot afford to tolerate it (FGM/C) any longer”.
Renowned Child Protection Specialist – Nkeiru Maduechesi praised the state House of Assembly for coming up with a law against the monster, stressing the need for availability of budget and finance as well as woman sensitization to fight the practice.
Maduechesi also called for the institutionalization of awareness creation, surveillance, data collection to ascertain the number of female babies circumcised in addition to effective coordination and specific budget outlay.*