Child marriages, female genital mutilation on increase, say expert
Juvenile development experts in Nigeria on Wednesday raised the alarm that female genital mutilation and child marriages were fast becoming a huge source of concern in the country.
They, therefore called on the government to mount the campaign against such trends while other stakeholders drive the support in dishing out information on the practice so as to reduce the rising incidences of violent and disfiguring injuries on the genitals of young females.
They states these during a conference organized by the Society for Adolescents and Young People’s Health in Nigeria, in collaboration with other partners.
The theme of the conference was ‘Fulfilling Promises: Optimizing Investment in Adolescents in Africa’.
The Country Director of Pathfinder International Nigeria, Dr. Amina Dorayi, said many people in Nigeria appeared to shy away from matters affecting the lives of young people.
Speaking specifically on the dangers of female genital mutilation and child marriages, Dorayi said, “More young persons were facing physical and mental health challenges as a result of the two ugly practices”.
She added that there was the need to start sensitizing the youths on the dangers of child marriage and female genital mutilation.
The Assistant UNFPA Representative in Nigeria, Osaretin Adonri, said if the country must really develop, female genital mutilation and child marriages must be stopped as they deprive the female gender of contributing to the economy.
The Vice President, Sub-Saharan Africa, for the International Association for Adolescent Health, Prof. Adesegun Fatusi, stated that investments in young people across Nigeria had been on the lowest in the world.