By Chris Ugwus,
This year’s theme of the International Day of Zero Tolerance for FGM is ” Accelerating investment to end FGM”. The theme was chosen, like many countries, including Nigeria, are experiencing increased cases of FGM due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Calling for acceleration in investment to end FGM
FGM was called a ” flagrant manifestation of gender inequality by UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, in this year’s message on International Day of Zero Tolerance for FGM.
Guterres called for accelerated investment by member nations to stop the practice of FGM. Accordingly, our project revolved around pushing for the provision of budget lines for budget items that address challenges of FGM, at both national and subnational governments in Nigeria. Our justification for this Project is that eliminating the practice of FGM will uphold the human rights of all girls and women in Enugu State, and indeed, Nigeria.
We engaged with the media, the Youths, and policymakers, employing media tools: radio, TV, and Twitter handle.
On a scale of 0-5, our media Project scored 4, given the feedback received from our radio/TV participants.
“Thank you SIRP and GMCENDFGM for the good work you are doing” Keep up the good work”.- Osondu
Another listener on the radio audience participatory program:
” I support FGM. It’s the practice of our forefathers, which we must maintain.”
The lesson learned from the above indicates that we still have to do a lot of work in using the media to change attitudes and behaviors around FGM. Thank you GMCENDFGM for all your support.
- Even when we would pay for radio slots; ESBS Radio Station was still hesitant to accept to provide us a slot since for them there are more urgent and socially important political and social events than a female issue like FGM.
- This is a patriarchal society!!
- Shegalinku, an online TV station was favorably disposed to airing our Webinar program for the event.
- We need to step up a media campaign to sensitise the public about the ” Violence Against Persons Prohibition (VAPP)Law,2019 of Enugu state, Nigeria, which criminalises FGM. We shall also employ a media-based SBCC ( Social Behavioral Change Communication)Technique to end FGM in Nigeria.