The Speaker , Rebecca Kadaga has asked government and local leaders in the Karamoja region to address the cross border movements to address the problem of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) in Uganda.
Kadaga made these remarks while officiating as chief guest at International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) at Lemusui, Moruita Sub-county,in Nakapiriprit District on Friday, 02 March 2018.
The Speaker said that previously, FGM was not practiced in Uganda but due to the cross border movements, it was adopted by the communities on the Ugandan side. She added that even with efforts to curb it in Uganda, the girls are sent to Kenya where they are circumcised due to the open and porous borders.
Female circumcision was not part of our culture. Iit was imported from Kenya, Kadaga said.
She commended the local surgeons who gave up the practice and promised to support them in other income generating activities.
The Speaker urged the leaders and the locals to fight those who still believe in the inhuman act.
The United Nations representative to Uganda in her message read by the UN Moroto Zonal Office Chief, Rebecca Kwagala noted that, if no serious action is taken, 54 million girls could be subjected to FGM by 2030.
She added that over 200 million girls and women have experienced Female Genital Mutilation in 30 countries across Africa, the Middle East and Asia.
During the same function, local leaders in Karamoja region advocated for more socio services, especially in the education sector to keep girls at school.
The Nakapiriprit LC V Chairman, John Nangiro, said that once the young girls are circumcised, they drop out of school leading to high numbers of child marriages in the region.
Nakapiripirit District MP, Hon. Esther Anykune acknowledged the health challenges in the hard to reach areas of her constituency.
She urged government and other well-wishers to intervene by donating an ambulance to save mothers since they now deliver in hospitals unlike before.
Anykune said that women get birth complications due to the effects of FGM.
FGM is a violent practice that scars women and girls for life, endangering their health, depriving them of their fundamental human rights and the chance to reach their full potential.
The Commemoration under the theme "Ending Female Genital Mutilation /cutting is a Poltical Decision" was attended by local leaders from Kapchorwa, Kween, Bukwo and Amudat districts which are known for the practice.
Source: Parliament of Uganda