The efforts towards ending the practice of Female Genital Mutilation has received a boost in Osun State as 83 prominent Traditional Rulers in the state have lent their voices to its eradication.
The traditional rulers said the practice of Female Genital Mutilation should stop because it is delicate and has negative consequences on girls and women.
The Team on FGM abandonment led by Aduke Obelawo stormed the monthly meeting of Osun State Council of Traditional Rulers held in Osogbo the state capital on August 1, 2019 and was warmly received by over 80 monarchs.
The sensitization was made possible by the collaborative effort and support of the State Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs
The team comprised of the representatives of the Ministries of Women and Children Affairs, Funmilola Adewale and Adebowale Rufai; Reproductive Health Coordinator, State Ministry of Health, Olapeju Olaogun; Federation of Muslim Women Association of Nigeria, Alhaja Suwebat Babalola Adubi; and Value Re-orientation for Community Enhancement, Damilare Alagbe and Vincent Enike; and UNFPA Social Media Champion, David Omotoso.
Obelawo saluted the Royal Fathers and appreciated the privilege availed them.
She appealed to all the Royal Fathers to use their positions to support the stop of FGM in their various domains.
She explained that FGM is globally frowned at because of it adverse effects.
She further stated that the practice had been outlawed and considered illegal by both the Federal and Osun State Governments.
The team used the occasion to highlight some of the consequences of FGM, which include excessive bleeding, coloids formation, prolonged and obstructed labour, painful sexual intercourse, urine and blood retention, tears and a host of others.
According to Obelawo: “Traditionally, it was generally believed that Female Genital Mutilation prevents promiscuity in women and girls as well as unwanted pregnancies but reverse is always the case.
“FGM has no religious basis as there is no religion that evidentially supports the FGM in their respective faith.
“It also has no health benefits or any benefit at all.
“So we must all be ready and eager to advocate for good parenting, raising responsible girls, teaching and monitoring them to desist from all forms of stigmatizing acts and immorality.
“Celebrating core values like virginity should be considered as basic alternative to mutilation.”
Oba Munirudeen Adesola Lawal (Laminisa 1), the Timi of Ede, coordinated the sensitization session.
The Traditional Rulers unanimously agreed that FGM must stop in the State.
Speaking on behalf of other traditional rulers, the Aragberi of Iragberi, Oba Folorunsho Agboade Makanju, commended the team for the efforts put together towards eradicating FGM.
The traditional ruler said: “Please ensure you organize a conference where the general public and dignitaries will be more enlightened as this will be a helpful approach towards eradicating the FGM.
“Prepare a proposal and we shall help facilitate it.”
Also, the Alaagba of Aagba, Oba Ogunwole Joseph, and the Eburu of Iba, Oba Adekunle Okunoye, pledged the commitment of the traditional rulers in the state towards eradicating the practice of FGM.