The wife of the Governor of Lagos State, Mrs. Bolanle Ambode has expressed optimism that Female Genital Mutilation could be stamped out of Africa by 2030 .
She observed that all individual and institutional stakeholders could work together towards achieving the objective.
Speaking at a ceremony organised to mark this year’s International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) in Lagos , Mrs. Ambode noted that, although the practice was well entrenched in the continent, with some countries recording up to 90% prevalence among girls and women, the situation was not hopeless if the current advocacy was sustained or increased.
According to her, “The pace of penetration of awareness seems slow because the practice is an ancient one, deeply rooted in our various cultures but that does not make our efforts fruitless. Though progress may be slow, we are going somewhere as rural women, mothers and young girls, are becoming aware of the severe health implications of the barbaric practice”.
“A Few years ago, many women, even some educated ones, saw it as a normal and socially acceptable practice but the story is fast changing, as awareness is getting mileage and rural women are now campaigning against it”, she declared.
The governor’s wife implored governments to fight the practice with direct legislation, in the manner they are doing with some other wicked anti-female practices.
Explaining that FGM constituted an extreme form of discrimination against women and girls, directly violating their rights to health, security and physical integrity, she wondered why women should be subjected to such life-threatening dehumanization.
She contended that mothers, fathers and NGOs, must continue to voice their concern and governments must put in place the right statutes, for total eradication of the practice in our country and the continent by 2030.