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Group raises concerns on male child preference, others across Anambra

By News Desk

An advocacy group, Rule of Law and Anti-Corruption (RoLAC), has raised the alarm over the continued practice of Female Genital Mutilation, female disinheritance, and male child preference in communities in Anambra.

The group, sponsored by the British Council, carried out research in selected communities, to promote the campaign to end FGM and other Harmful Traditional Practices (HTP) in the state.

The research was also aimed at sensitising communities on the Violence Against Persons Prohibition (VAPP), Law as a framework to accessing justice.

The group said that findings in communities showed that the trend was still been perpetrated in communities and there was a need to intensify campaign against FGM and other Harmful Traditional Practices (HTP) in the state.

Speaking on behalf of the group at a Preliminary Findings Review Meeting with stakeholders in Akwa, the Anambra State capital, the Lead Consultant with RoLAC, Prof. Mercy Anagbogu, stated that the promotion of a campaign against the action would end the act across the country.

Anagbogu said that FGM and HTP such as widowhood practices, denial of inheritance rights, and male child preference, posed severe health risks and violate girls’ and women’s right to dignity and bodily integrity.

According to her, it is unfortunate that inspite of the enactment of the VAPP Law in 2017, FGM and other harmful traditional practices are still prevalent in Anambra.

“During our research, these communities told us they have stopped female genital ‘Cutting’ because they no longer use blade, whereas they still do what is called ‘Numbing’.

“They use very hot water, Robb, Vaseline, or dusting powder to harshly Robb and numb the genital part of a newborn baby to retard the development of the clitoris.

“These communities found another method to achieve the same purpose which they believe will help curb sexual desire and tame girls or women.

“They also said there was nothing harmful about widowhood practices which include compulsory mourning, not seen by others or allowed to bathe or wash her clothes, female disinheritance, and male child preference, ” she said.

Also speaking, another Consultant with RoLAC, Uju Onyendilefu, said there was the need to raise awareness about FGM and harmful traditional practices as well as the legal consequences.

According to her, women mostly enforce these harmful practices on fellow women because they have accepted them as normal even when they contravene the VAPP Law

“We need to reduce the incidence of FGM/HTC through advocacy via the media and meaningful community engagement. We need to educate the communities on the existence of VAPP Law, platforms to access medical support for victims of FGM and framework for seeking justice for victims. We need to also support the implementation of VAPP Law to increase access to justice,” she said

 

 

 

carried out research in selected communities, to promote the campaign to end FGM and other Harmful Traditional Practices (HTP) in the state.

 

An advocacy group, Rule of Law and Anti-Corruption (RoLAC), has raised alarm over the continued practice of Female Genital Mutilation, female disinheritance, and male child preference in some communities in Anambra.

Prof. Mercy Anagbogu, the Lead Consultant with RoLAC, made the assertion in Awka, on Wednesday, at a Preliminary Findings Review Meeting with stakeholders.

The group, sponsored by the British Council, carried out research in selected communities, to promote the campaign to end FGM and other Harmful Traditional Practices (HTP) in the state.

The research was also aimed at sensitising communities on the Violence Against Persons Prohibition (VAPP), Law as a framework to accessing justice.

Anagbogu said that FGM and HTP such as widowhood practices, denial of inheritance rights, and male child preference, posed severe health risks and violate girls’ and women’s right to dignity and bodily integrity.

According to her, it is unfortunate that inspite of the enactment of the VAPP Law in 2017, FGM and other harmful traditional practices are still prevalent in Anambra.

“During our research, these communities told us they have stopped female genital ‘Cutting’ because they no longer use blade, whereas they still do what is called ‘Numbing’.

“They use very hot water, Robb, Vaseline, or dusting powder to harshly robb and numb the genital part of a new born baby to retard the development of the clitoris.

“These communities found another method to achieve the same purpose which they believe will help curb sexual desire and tame girls or women.

“They also said there was nothing harmful about widowhood practices which includes compulsory mourning, not seen by others or allowed to bath or wash her clothes, female disinheritance, and male child preference, ” she said.

Also speaking, Mrs Uju Onyendilefu, another Consultant with RoLAC, said there was the need to raise awareness about FGM and harmful traditional practices as well as the legal consequences.

According to her, women mostly enforce these harmful practices on fellow women because they have accepted them as normal even when they contravene the VAPP Law

“We need to reduce the incidence of FGM/HTC through advocacy via the media and meaningful community engagement.

“We need to educate the communities on the existence of VAPP Law, platforms to access medical support for victims of FGM and framework for seeking justice for victims.

“We need to also support the implementation of VAPP Law to increase access to justice,” she said

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