Female Genital Mutilation Costs $1.4b Spent Yearly — Hacey Health Initiative
Hacey Health Initiative, a Non Governmental Organisation, has said that Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) poses a threat to the national development and the global economy as it costs $1.4 billion yearly expenses to cater for the negative impacts created on the victims’ healthy living.
The Organisation, which has embarked on StopCut Project since 2019 to end FGM in three Southwest states in Nigeria, namely, Ekiti, Oyo and Osun, said that $1.4 billion is being spent yearly at the global state to address the health effects of Female Genital Mutilation, which represents 10-30% of Nigeria national budget.
Oluwatomi Olunuga, Programme Manager of the Health Initiative while presenting the report of the organisation in Osogbo, noted that FGM is an harmful cultural practice which has affected over 200 millon women and girls globally, adding that with COVID-19, additional two million girls may be affected.
Olunuga said this during Hacey Helath Initiative advocacy, where 1, 920 families, 155 policymakers in and 65 traditional leaders signed a pledge to support the eradication of FGM, adding the Initiative also reached out to over 12,000 students across Oyo, Osun and Ekiti states with end FGM message.
He said, “During our advocacy, we have increased the knowledge of 72 law enforcement institutions across the project states on FGM laws. We organised learning and sharing experience workshop for 152 FGM alliance members, we trained 100 media personnel as well as 322 community leaders across project states.
“We have also reached over one million people with the end Female Genital Mutilation message, reached over 300,000 social media users. We hosted essay competition to commemorate the International day of zero tolerances for FGM with over 1,000 entries and 15 awarded winners across the project states.”
Also, Kayode Titiloye director, commercial and legal drafting, Osun State Ministry of Justice, charged journalists to do their best in ensuring they promote and create awareness about free legal services on female gender violence in the interest of the masses.
Titiloye said the Osun State Ministry of Justice is open for free legal services for residents of the state on gender-based violence and Female Genital Mutilation.
SOURCE: Business Day