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Persecution due to non-compliance with FGM tradition

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Female Genital Mutilation is one of the oldest Africa tradition which has been in practice for many centuries.

This practice has health implications in which the World Health Organization has campaign vigorously to put an end to.

A report revealed that Nigeria has the highest absolute number of FGM worldwide, accounting for about one-quarter of the estimated 130 million survivors of Female Genital Mutilation in the world.

Despite legislation and policies prohibiting the practice, it still occurs in many communities in Nigeria.

Statistics also reveal that 27 per cent of Nigerian women between the ages of 15 and 49 are victims. Although the prevalence has decreased in some parts of the country in the last 30 years, but not in Ondo State and Oyo State.

It was reported in Guardian newspaper, page 21 of 28th July 2018 by Movement for the Survival of the underprivilege (MOSUP) on the high rate of FGM in Ondo State, in line with the incidence of dehumanization experienced by one Mrs Yemisi Kolade of Ikare Akoko area of the state.

It was also reported in Guardian publication of 14th January 2018, when a middle-aged woman, Mrs Oluwakemisola Falade, who lives in Ifira, Akoko South-East of Ondo State In December 2017. She was passionately cried out for help as she was threatened with banishment by community youths and leaders for her refusal to allow a forcible circumcision of her two daughters.

This practise still pose a big challenge in Ondo state. There are some incidences of this magnitude that were under-reported or not reported at all.

The pathetic incidence of one Mr Agbesua Awotuse Taiwo and his wife that hails from Ondo State, the couple suffered the same faith from their community due to non-compliance with the Female Genital Mutilation.

He (Taiwo) who hail from the family of (Late) High Chief in his community explained on how he and his wife were molested, persecuted for his refusal to allow the circumcision of their two daughters, which serves as a symbol of honour and pride in the community, and as a means of ensuring virginity/curb promiscuity for protection of female modesty, chastity and purification.

Mr Agbesua Awotuse Taiwo relocated his family (Inclusive of his two daughters, Bridget and Favour) outside the country, and when it becomes obvious that he did on him.

He was also suspended from the social-cultural group, the highest decision-making body in the community not want to return them home for the mandatory Female Genital Mutilation traditions hence trigger the molestation and physical attacks
He was harassed, molested and Ill-treated to the extent of sustaining an injury on his way from the church after church service at Adeye street Ketu Lagos at exactly 12.30p; on Sunday 27th January 2019 by unidentified two men.

He was hospitalized where he was treated and confirm that he sustained an injury on his arms and neck.

So with these aforementioned incidences, it is glaring that the culture of Female Genital Mutilation despite government legislation cannot stop as of now and the native people continuous to persecute whoever opposed the tradition as in the case of Mr and Mrs Agbesua Awotuse Taiwo and his wife (Mrs. Kemi Helen Agbesua).

More legislature is required from the government to protect those who stand against the tradition but is not forthcoming hence the report and publication of this dastardly act.

REFERENCES;
UNFPA-UNICEF Joint Programme on Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting (2017) 2016 Annual Report
NIGERIA: THE LAW AND FGM June 2018 – 28 too many
www.medconsumer. Info/tropics/fgm.htm,
Guardian 14 January 2018 – Female genital mutilation still a big threat to Nigerian girl-child survival, development – By Oluwaseun Akingboye, Akure
One-on-one discussion with concerned individuals


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