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FG: We would abolish traditional practices affecting female health

Minister of women affairs, Pauline Tallen has disclosed that the federal government is committed to abolishing all forms of violence and harmful traditional practices endangering the health of women and girls in Nigeria.

This was disclosed on Saturday by Tallen while addressing journalists in Abuja after a five-kilometre walk to create awareness of female genital mutilation mutilation(FGM) and cancer.

She said Nigeria has one of the highest rates of FGM cases and this has exposed women to reproductive health challenges.

Tallen said it has been observed that despite government laws and reforms, many cultural and religious groups still put the health of women in danger.

“In spite of government and partner’s positive interventions, high and community-level advocacy, capacity building of circumcisers, including the provision of alternate income for circumcisers, FGM practise still persists in our society,” Tallen said.

“We need to provide more education by increasing advocacy on the health danger posed on girls and women by the practice of FGM.

“I wish to state that the Ministry is committed to abolishing all traditional practices that endanger the health and dignity of girls and womanhood in Nigeria and in this regard will work more with the Ministry of Health.”

Ulla Mueller, country representative of United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), described FGM as a gross human rights violation, and an extreme form of gender inequality against women and girls.

Mueller said eliminating FGM practice will help in actualising the sustainable development goals (SDGs) targets on health and well-being, quality education, gender equality, decent work and economic growth.

She added that access to digital skills would provide information to develop positive behavioural relationships that would contribute to the elimination of FGM in Nigeria.

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