NAN – The Lagos State Government said on Thursday, August 6, 2015 that Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) would soon be a thing of the past in the state.
Mrs Omobolanle Ogunmola, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.
She said that the state government had set up a Steering Committee to work with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) toward ending the practice.
“The issue of female genital mutilation will be a thing of the past very soon.
“We want to ensure that all those cultural beliefs that do more harm than good become a thing of the past.
“We are doing more sensitisation to our women; we allow them to know that it is not the best; that it is not practised in the world now.
“So, what we do is to go to these women even at hospitals, ante-natal clinics and tell them that you don’t have to do it for girls.
“And if you have to do it for men, you must do it in the hospitals; so we are trying to see that it is eradicated and that there is a stop to it; and I think it is getting reduced by the day.
“Lagos is on the move; women have to take up their own rights; they need to be up and doing; they need to fight this.
“And if their families are not responding to their requests, they should get in touch with us; we know how to come around it.“
NAN reports that statistics by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and UNICEF had indicated that 20 million women and girls were still subjected to FGM in Nigeria.
Statistics have shown that female genital mutilationis still being practiced in Ebonyi, Ekiti, Imo, Osun, and Oyo states.