Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is
defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) as “all procedures that involve
partial or total removal of the external female genitalia, or other injury to
the female genital organs for nonmedical reasons.
The World Health Organisation (WHO)
classifies FGM into 4 types. WHO classifies FGM/C into four categories with
FGM Type I: partial or total removal of
the clitoris and/or the prepuce (Clitoridectomy). The 2 subdivisions are, FGM Type Ia: removal of the
prepuce/clitoral hood (circumcision) and FGM Type Ib: removal of the clitoris
with the prepuce
FGM Type II: Partial or total removal
of the clitoris and the labia minora, with or without excision of the labia
The 3 subdivisions are ofFGM Type II are; FGM Type IIa: removal
of the labia minora only; FGM Type IIb: partial or total removal of the
clitoris and the labia minora; and
FGM Type IIc: partial or total removal of the clitoris, the labia minora and
the labia majora
FGM Type III: Narrowing of the vaginal
orifice with the creation of a covering seal by cutting and appositioning the
labia minora and/or the labia majora, with or without excision of the clitoris
The 2 subdivisions are,FGM Type IIIa: removal and a
positioning the labia minora with or without excision of the clitoris; and FGM
Type IIIb: removal and a positioning the labia majora with or without excision
of the clitoris
Type 4 Unclassified; refers to all other harmful
procedures to the female genitalia for non-medical purposes, including
cauterization, pulling, incision, piercing, pricking, and scrapping for
It is estimated that over 200 million
girls and women worldwide are living with or at risk of suffering the
associated negative health consequences of FGM
Every year 3 million girls and women
are at risk of FGM and are therefore exposed to the potential negative health
consequences of this harmful practice.
FGM has no known health benefits, and
those girls and women who have undergone the procedure are at great risk of
suffering from its complications throughout their lives.
The procedure of FGM is painful and
traumatic, and is often performed under unsterile conditions by a traditional
practitioner who has little knowledge of female anatomy or how to manage
possible adverse events.
Moreover, the removal of or damage to
healthy genital tissue interferes with the natural functioning of the body and
may cause severe immediate and long-term negative health consequences.
The practice of FGM is prevalent in 30
countries in Africa and in a few countries in Asia and the Middle East, but
also present across the globe due to international migration
FGM practice is deeply rooted in a
strong cultural and social framework. It is endorsed by the practicing
community and is supported by loving parents who believe that undergoing FGM is
in the best interest of their daughter.
The beliefs sustaining the practice of
FGM vary greatly from one community to another, although there are many common
themes. However, the primary reason is that it is part of the history and
cultural tradition of the community.
Despite its cultural importance, we
need to acknowledge the fact that FGM is a harmful traditional practice that
violates the rights of girls and women.
Therefore, FGM has to be eliminated.
female circumcision and genital mutilation (Prohibitation) Law 2004 was enacted
by the Osun State House of Assembly and Assented to by the executive governor
of Osun state, His Excellency, Gov. Olagunsoye Oyinlola on 12th April, 2005.
It is a law to prohibit violence against women in
public and private life, whether or not the consent of the affected person is
The law captures the citation, prohibition, offender
of the law, medical certification, punishment, power of arrest, arraignment and
trial, appeal and interpretation.
According to Osun State female Circumcision and
Genital Mutilation (Prohibitation) Law 2004, offender of the law shall be any
female who offers herself for circumcision or genital mutilation any person who coerces, entices, councels or induces any female to
undergo circumcision or genital mutilation, any person who allows his/her
daughter or ward to be circumcised or has the genital organ mutilated, any
person who, other than for medical reasons, perform the operation of female
circumcision or female mutilation.
Section 4 subsection 1 of Osun State
female Circumcision and Genital Mutilation (Prohibition) Law 2004 captures “medical
Subsection 1 says; where a
surgical operation is required by any female to save her life which requires
the clitoris, or any or all of the labia majora or labia minora to be removed where
it is required to remove all or any part of the female organ referred to under
this section in order to save the life of a female: (i) which becom es
cancerous, (ii)who has been raped by a person or persons, (iii) who has vaginal
infection in which, if the clitoris, labia majora, labia minora, is not removed
will die; ….
Subsection 2 state that a
medical officer shall issue a certificate stating the reason, time, date and
after effect(s) of such operation.
Section 4 subsection 2 of Osun State female
Circumcision and Genital Mutilation (Prohibition) Law 2004 captures such case as in sub-section (1) of this law
that it shall be permissible under his law upon the tendering of such
certificate signed by the Medical officer.
Section 5 says; any person
found guilty under this law shall be liable to on first conviction, a fine of
one hundred thousand Naira (100,000) or an imprisonment for two years; and each
subsequent offence attract two years jail term without an option of fine.
Section 6 of Osun State female Circumcision and
Genital Mutilation (Prohibitation) Law 2004 captures the power of arrest.
Section 6 says; any person
who contravenes any of the provisions of
this law may be arrested without warrant by: (i) member(s) of Police Force,
(ii) Health officer(s) of the ministry of health, (iii) Health officer(s) in
the local government areas, and (iv) any other person authorized by the law.
Section 7 of Osun State female Circumcision and
Genital Mutilation (Prohibitation) Law 2004 captures the arraignment and trial.
Section 7 says; any person
arrested under the provision of this law shall be taken without delay to the nearest
police station where he or she may be granted bail until he or she is brought
before a magistrate court for trials.
Section 8 of Osun State female Circumcision and
Genital Mutilation (Prohibitation) Law 2004 captures “the appeal”.
Section 8 says; where a
conviction upon an offence under this law is challenged, a high court sitting
in the jurisdiction shall entertain any appeal arising therefrom.
Section 9 of Osun State female Circumcision and
Genital Mutilation (Prohibitation) Law 2004 captures the interpretation.
According to section
9 of Osun State female Circumcision and Genital Mutilation (Prohibitation) Law
2004 “Female Genital Mutilation” includes all procedures that involve partial
or total removal, cutting or incision of the female external genitalia or
injury to the female genital organ.
Osun State female Circumcision and Genital Mutilation
(Prohibitation) Law 2004 defines “circumcision” as the act of cutting off the
clitoris of a female.
Osun State female Circumcision and Genital Mutilation (Prohibitation) Law 2004
“genital Organ” means the vaginal or sex organ of a female.
female Circumcision and Genital Mutilation (Prohibitation) Law 2004 defines
“medical officer” as a duly qualified and registerd medical practitioner or
surgeon resident or working with any state owned or private health centre.
the stand of the Osun State female Circumcision and Genital Mutilation
(Prohibitation) Law 2004, we also understand the good people of Osun state need
to come to the awareness of this law. Hence, there is need for domestication of
this law across LGAs, Towns and Communities. @raufaregbesola
There is a need
to further engage the judiciary and the security agencies toward the enforcement
of these laws to avoid having them as just virtual accomplishments.
There is a need
to also train the personnel in the judiciary and security agencies on the
domestication of the law.
@CivilDefenceNGR, Nigerian Prisons and other agencies must be alerted towards
this urgent call to prosecute every offender of this harmful practice.
more about the @endcuttinggirls Campaign, please visit endcuttinggirls.org for
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