Ebonyi: 2 LGAs set to end FGM practices

A cross section of stakeholders from various communities

Ivo and Ishielu Local Government Areas (LGAs) of Ebonyi state has finally scheduled dates to do a public declaration on denouncement of Female Genitail Mutilations (FGM).

While Ivo which has five communities chose October 31, Ishielu with 15 communities fixed 24 of same month in 2020 for the declarations.

The two LGAs during a consensus meeting with key stakeholders for FGM abandonment held at Ascension church hall Ntezi, Ishielu LGA, and Isiaka, headquarters of Ivo local government council on September 22 and 24, shared their experiences in convincing their people.

They were optimistic that FGM abandonment would be realistic.

They particularly pointed out ignorance and low self esteem to be one of the major factors that lure people into FGM practice.

Mr Okechukwu Ali from Nkaleha in Ishielu local government area noted that ending FGM practices was realisable.

He said, “It was not an easy thing to convince them. While speaking with the people I noticed that ignorance, low self esteem factored into these practices. And this has also made many people to deny themselves of help that could have come their way.”

Also Mr Theophilous Nwafor said, “The problem we are having is that those in the village agreed that FGM  practice is real, but about 60% of child bearing women in our place leaves outside the village.”

However, the Director of National Orientation Agency (NOA) Ebonyi state, Dr Emmanuel Abah, while addressing the people spoke of the need for community enforcement mechanism.

He noted that with the support of United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) to end FGM practices in the communities, they have been able to engage critical stakeholders on FGM abandonment, training of FGM community champions, sensitisation of women during the annual women’s home and abroad meeting, advocacy dialouge with Traditional rulers, Religious leaders, among others.

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