The Minister for Gender and Social Protection, Otiko Afisa-Djaba, has stated that Ghana is making headway in its fight against Female Genital Mutilation (FGM).
She noted however that, due to cross-border migration, the act is still being practiced in some parts of the country.
She said this at an event which formed part of the Campaign on Accelerated Reduction of Maternal Mortality in Africa (CARMMA), meant to educate the public and key stakeholders on the effects of FGM.
“Here in Ghana, we have women coming through the cross boarder programs from the Burkina into Ghana or out of Ghana into those places, all the neighboring countries. It is reducing in places largely in Ghana, but because of the cross-border activities in some places like Pusiga, there is an increase” she revealed.
“Our government also sends a strong signal to perpetrators that Africa frowns on their misdeeds; and harmful traditional practices, negative traditional practices must be condemned.”
A woman, who was a victim of FGM at the age of twelve, spoke of her ordeal and stated that the act was still ongoing, but was now being done secretively in order not to attract public scorn.
“I was twelve years when my grandmother mutilated me, I bled a lot. When I was going to give birth, I suffered, and the doctors had to use a tube to pull out the baby because he said I had no clitoris,” she narrated.
“Female genital mutilation is still ongoing in my region, but it’s done in secret. There is a new method they use, they use hot water and Shea butter and press it to the clitoris to stop it from growing. I would not do it to my child, when I give birth to a female child. I’m against it and I want the government to do something about it,” she added.
The Minister stated that, the government is committed to ensuring that perpetrators of FGM are made to face the law, adding that support systems have been put in place for victims.
“After condemning and criminalizing it, we support and put in services in the communities for sensitization, for counseling, and how we can abandon the practices,” she said.
By: Ann-Shirley Ziwu/citifmonline.com/Ghana