Female Genital Mutilation Survivor Says Men Should Not See Expressive Women As Wayward

By Abayomi Elias 

A survivor who spoke as panelist at the seminar organised by Cee-Hope Foundation on the day set aside to commemorate International Day On Zero Tolerance For Female Genital Mutilation said communication is key, hence men should not undermine the emotions of victims of FGM who are confident to express themselves because communication is key. 

Comfort Udeme Udoh, a survivor of female circumcision said even though she was a survivor, there are some girls that died in the process of circumsizing them and there are some going through a lot but can’t say anything. They just keep quiet. “It is an evil that is eating us in this clime.

“It is evil barbaric, it is not a good thing. Government, individual should make a very urgent decision to stop the menace.

“You don’t need to be quiet, we should increase the awareness in religious homes. The churches and the mosques. Anywhere we found people gathering, we should educate them. So many people are not aware, some are aware but they can’t speak up. 

“We should come together and stop the evil because women are indeed marginalized. Married men need to be patient with their wives that are circumsized. 

“They have to listen. Some men believe they are the head, whatever the woman is feeling they don’t bother in as much as they get themselves satisfied. Men should listen to their wives, you have to understand your wife after being intimate with her. 

“You have to know what your wife is feeling, you have to know how your wife is feeling after being intimate. Some men just want to satisfy themselves and leave, they don’t bother about their partners. 

“Communication matters a lot, you have to talk to your wife and you have to tell her when it is hurting and vice versa. Men should not see women that are expressive as wayward”. Comfort concluded.  

The Founder of Cee-Hope Mrs Betty Abbah, in an interview with Newsconnect correspondent at the event said today is globally recognised being the search light to take all necessary actions to end Female genital mutilation (FGM) which is very prevalent in Nigeria, in Africa and some parts of Asia. In her words, she said;

“We have seen from the event today that FGM has no medical benefits, it is just about power and control over the women’s body. We have seen the devastating effect on women’s sexuality. The health, psychological implications et Al. 

“This is the time to talk about the development of women and men keeping the same pace in terms of development. This is not the time to mutilate anyone’s body, we are not in a slavery era neither are we in a stone age. 

“We should not accommodate any form of harmful cultural practices because it is just not necessary. We should prioritize the right things. We should do the right things. We should ensure women and girls have equal rights. We should not allow culture that allow men to control women’s body to fly. At the end of the day, nobody benefits. 

Betty also emphasized on the need why government should swiftly act on the issue before more complicated issues emerge. 

“We can create all the awareness, we can point accusing fingers at violators, it is the responsibility of the government to enforce this existing laws. 

“To stop the practice of the custom of these harmful cultural practices. The women cutters, the local chiefs, and elders that keep perpetrating the immorality, resultantly violating the right of women and girls in their communities. 

“If men are dedicated towards ending FGM just as they are dedicated to winning election, I believe it will go a long way. We should prioritise ending FGM. 

The Executive Director of Women’s right and Health Project who doubles as the Manager of Ireti resource center Lagos, Bose Ironsi said Nigeria is still ranking very high in terms of prevalence of female genital mutilation. That there is need to intensify awareness so that people won’t inherit bad culture but a good one. 

“Nigeria is still ranking very high in terms of prevalence of FGM, and I know a lot of works had been done on this regard. 

“The existence of the VAPP law compels the perpetrators of FGM to commit the immoral act underground. If you really look at it, there is no medical reasons why FGM should be done. They are doing it for cultural reasons which is against the right of the female. Culture is dynamic, it changes but the people don’t want to change”. She said.

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