On the occasion of the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation, it is imperative to address the grave dangers associated with this harmful practice and highlight the crucial role that lawyers play in the ongoing fight to eradicate Female Genital Mutilation (FGM).
Female Genital Mutilation, a violation of human rights and a form of gender-based violence, poses serious physical and psychological risks to women and girls. As legal professionals, we are responsible for advocating for the protection of these rights and contributing to the global effort to eliminate this harmful practice.
The International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA) and The Nigerian Bar Association Women Forum have raised awareness, provided legal support, and advocated for policy changes to combat FGM. Their tireless efforts have significantly contributed to the progress made in the fight against this deeply rooted tradition.
However, there is a pressing need for lawyers and the Nigerian Bar Association to take a more proactive stance in this battle. Lawyers, as guardians of justice, should actively engage in legislative initiatives, public awareness campaigns, and legal interventions to ensure the eradication of FGM. By leveraging our legal expertise, we can influence policies that protect the rights of women and girls, promote education on the dangers of FGM, and support survivors seeking justice.
Together, we can use our legal expertise to create meaningful change, working in collaboration with organizations like FIDA and the Nigerian Bar Association Women’s Forum to advance the cause of women’s rights and eliminate the practice of Female Genital Mutilation.
AFAM OSIGWE, SAN
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