Lawmaker representing Ivo State Constituency in Ebonyi House of Assembly, Oliver Osi, has called for stakeholders’ collaboration to address the epidemic of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) in the state.
The lawmaker who is the House Committee Chairman on Health, made the remark during a one-day training workshop for media practitioners on gender-based violence, sexual reproductive health rights and advocacy.
The workshop was organised by the Coalition of Eastern Non-Governmental Organisations (CENGOS) in partnership with Civil Resource Development and Documentation Centre (CIRDDOC) with the support of Amplite Change (AC).
He regarded the FGM as man’s inhumanity to man, that required urgent attention and continuous advocacies, especially at the rural areas
Osi who condemned the age-long practice in the state called on traditional rulers, parents and rural dwellers to resist and desist from the practice as there was no emotional or physiological benefit in such practice.
“This practice is obnoxious and barbaric; it is man’s inhumanity to man. This is the custom that we inherited but I am sure if our forefathers come out from the grave, they will be surprised that FGM is still in practice,” Osi said.
In a paper presentation entitled: “Overview of Reproductive Health, Women Sexual and Reproductive Rights,” Dr Joseph Agboeze described reproductive health as a state of complete physical, mental and social wellbeing.
Agboeze, a Consultant in Obstetrics and Gynaecology in the Federal Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki, noted that reproductive health is not merely the absence of disease or disorder of the reproductive process.
He listed the traditional harmful practices to include female genital mutilation and cuttings, early marriage, widowhood rites and widow’s right infringement and female disinheritance.
He added that Ebonyi has the highest percentage of women circumcision in the South-East zone of the country.