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Female Genital Mutilation: First Lady Seeks Protection of Girl-Child’s Rights

The wife of the President, Mrs. Oluremi Tinubu has urged parents and guardians across the nation to protect the rights, vulnerability and well-being of the girl child in the country.

Tinubu stated this in a statement signed on Tuesday in commemoration of the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), under the theme “Her Voice, Her Future: Investing in Survivors Led Movements to End Female Genital Mutilation”.

She noted that the FGM commemoration is another reminder to parents and guardians of their responsibility to protect the rights of every girl child in Nigeria.

The First Lady also raised concern about the hazards and health implications of FGM among girl child, while calling on the wife of governors across Nigeria to continue to support the fight against the FGM.

“We are once again reminded of the responsibility we bear to protect the rights, vulnerability and well-being of the girl child.

“Today, I call upon parents, particularly mothers, traditional leaders, and community leaders, where Female Genital Mutilation persists to consider the damage and irreversible health implications inflicted on our daughters.

“While acknowledging the progress made in the fight against Female Genital Mutilation in Nigeria, we must confront the practices that still persist, causing irreparable harm to our girls.”

Tinubu hailed non-governmental organisations, civil society organisations and healthcare professionals for lending their voices to the fight against FGM across the entire nation.

“I commend all our First Ladies of States, other Non-Governmental Organisations, Civil Society Organisations and Health care professionals for lending their voices to the fight against Female Genital Mutilation across the entire nation.

“As we collectively strive for the full eradication of Female Genital Mutilation in Nigeria by 2030, let all hands be on deck and let us continue to speak up against this injustice done to our girls”, Tinubu said.

Female genital mutilation, according to the World Health Organisation, “is a traditional harmful practice that involves the partial or total removal of external female genitalia or other injury to female genital organs for non-medical reasons.

It is estimated that more than 200 million girls and women alive today have undergone female genital mutilation in the countries where the practice is concentrated. In addition, every year an estimated 3 million girls are at risk of undergoing female genital mutilation, the majority of whom are cut before they turn 15 years old.

FGM is said not to have any health benefits. It can however lead to immediate health risks, as well as long-term complications to women’s physical, mental and sexual health and well-being”.