United Nations Population Fund, UNFPA, and United Nations Children’s Fund, UNICEF, have said that about 20 million women and girls were subjected to female genital mutilation.
The organizations, which disclosed this in a two-week training the trainer workshop for stakeholders drawn from five states with a view to exploring an evidence-based process on communication to promote behavioural change in Calabar, Cross River, recently, said female genital mutilation (FGM) still remained a major problem in Nigeria and its harmful practice has a serious health implication.
According to UNICEF, the practice of FGM is prevalent in five states which are Ebonyi, Ekiti, Imo, Osun and Oyo.
While speaking on the workshop, the UNICEF chief child protection officer in Nigeria, Rachael Harvey pointed out that Nigeria ranked third in the world and still had the highest absolute number of women and girls who have undergone the practice.
Harvey, represented by a UNICEF child protection specialist, Maryam Enyiazu, said the training would adopt a new proven model in behavioral change to address the issue.
Speaking also, the UNICEF Communication for Development chief in Nigeria, Mr. Arthur Tweneboa-Kodua corroborated that strategy of communication for development being a new proven theory would be adopted as it provided an added value to programme intervention.