Doctor, UNICEF decry violence against women

Parents have been advised to stop female genital mutilation, even as a medical doctor has called for stronger laws to curb the practice as well as other violent acts against women.
Speaking to newsmen recently at the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against women, an Aba-based medical practitioner, Dr. Sir Uchenna Anyanwu, observed that such practices as rape, sexual assault, domestic violence, female genital cutting/mutilation, dowry murder, early marriage, feticide, and the like are on the increase globally because the laws against them are not strong.
He advised government to do more in area of sensitizing the public against such ills in the society.
Dr. Anyanwu explained that Female Genital Mutilation/ Cutting (FMG/C) has complications such as serial pain, shock, hemorrhage, infection, urine retention, fever, among others as the act is performed by untrained practitioners who use unsterilized instruments.
At a town hall meeting organised by the JNFPA/UNICEF joint programme on FGM/C for Ngor Okpala Local Government Area in Imo State, a health officer among the team, Mrs Blessing Azubuike, also said that the dangers included decreased sex drive and satisfaction.
She wondered why the people of Ngor Okpala are still practicing it despite the sensitization carried out there in the past and urged them to stop it as it dehumanizes womanhood, and has no scientific or religious reason.
While observing that people indulge in it purportedly to safe-guard virginity until marriage,  Mrs Azubuike rather advocated moral regeneration, advising parents to  bring their children up in a godly way before marriage.
She likened FMG/C to the old practices of killing twins.
Also speaking at the town hall meeting, the director of the National Orientetion Agency  (NOA) in Imo, Mr Vitus Ekeocha, listed Ohaji/Egbema, Oguta, Ngor-Okpala, Ikeduru, Ehime Mbano, Owerri West, Ihutte Uboma and Orlu as the LGAs in Imo that are still practicing FMG/C while Osun, Ebonyi, Ekiti, Imo and Oyo are the states with widespread FMG/C.
He said that the meeting was to brainstorm with leaders on proper ways and sanctions that would lead to its eradication.
Participants, comprising leaders from 28 autonomous communities in Ngor Okpala, agreed to set up committees in their various areas to stop the act, while also making a public declaration through a communiqué, against FMG/C approved by their traditional rulers.
In attendance also were the Head of Department for Health, in the LGA, Mrs Margaret Ayoka, Mr. Chigozie Ojiako of NOA who displayed video clips that explained FMG/C dangers.

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