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Opinions Sat, 6 Dec 2014

Female Genital Mutilation Still Prevails In Ghana

Following the article dated April 8, 2014 by the Ghana News Agency on Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) practices in the Upper East Region which was based on a research from Action Aid Ghana and the Belim Wasa Development Agency; the Coalition of Women in Governance (COWIG) has also investigated a report by a victim and attest to the fact that the practice is still prevailing in that part of the Country.

COWIG is a women advocate group which supports and empower women against all sorts of violence. The coalition has strongly spoken against the practice of FGM and urges the security agencies especially the Ghana police service to investigate and fetch out possible perpetrators of such heinous crime against women. Awaiting reports from victims cannot stop this barbaric act but a proactive approach will save a lot of women.

Mr. Kyeremeh Gabriel Kofi, the President of the Jaman South branch of COWIG gave out the admonition which was instigated by an investigation conducted by the coalition. The investigation was based on a report from Mrs Ruby Tufuor, a mother and native of Chiana Paga, whose daughter is being pressurized by relatives to undergo circumcision in the Upper East Region. The investigations revealed that FGM is still being practiced even after criminalising in Ghana by Act 484 in 1994. The practice is currently done in-secrecy and in this specific case in the Chiana-Paga community only the first female daughters are circumcised. Apparently, Ruby’s elder sister Angela as a first daughter had already been circumcised.

The investigations revealed that FGM is believed to prevent or guide against interests in early sex and thereby discouraging promiscuity and prevent death of first baby born. Interestingly it is believed that the presence of a clitoris makes a woman a man. However, these primitive acts are disgraceful in our modern Ghana. FGM can cause death through excessive haemorrhage and may sometimes affect the upper labia which expose the victim to serious pains, far excruciating than the periodic trauma women go through during child birth. Angela is a lucky survivor; however it had left a psychological scare which had affected her live. Unfortunately, many victims do not survive. This is the plight of an innocent Ghanaian female child which we all have to halt without any equivocation.

The Jaman South branch of COWIG is of the opinion that, the world being a global village, has come to the stage where these outmoded inhuman act in the name of customs MUST BE DESISTED. COWIG pledges to follow up on these practices and we encourage all and sundry to join in this crusade to eradicate FGM in Ghana.

Issued by

THE PRESIDENT OF COWIG, (JAMAN SOUTH BRANCH)

Kyeremeh Gabriel Kofi

Columnist: Kyeremeh, Gabriel Kofi