By Ndey Sowe & Makutu Manneh
Dr. Isatou Touray, the Vice President of The Gambia, has called for close collaboration among stakeholders in the fight against Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) in The Gambia.
“Ending FGM requires collaboration among the large group of stakeholders, among these are policy makers, civil society organizations, teachers, health workers, traditional leaders, religious leaders, law enforcement and the judiciary as well,” she said.
The VP made these remarks on Tuesday, 9th February, 2021, marking International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation under the theme: “No Time for Global Inaction: Unite, Fund and Act to End FGM Now.”
Each year, February 6th marks the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). The commemoration of this day marks a significant moment as the world recognizes that FGM is truly a universal issue.
Madam Touray said funding required to address FGM cannot be compared to the benefit in preserving a girl’s body dignity and integrity, her health and her right to say no to violation.
“I therefore call on our development partners, philanthropists and concerned citizens to support this campaign to protect the Girl child,” she said.
“We must act quickly and continuously to ensure that girls have access to education, health and let us encourage the leadership skills of adult girls and their male peers and empower them to speak out and say enough to all forms of violence on their bodies.”
The Gambia’s VP said the government will join hands with NGOs, CSOs and other agencies to cover the remaining regions to abandon FGM and to become the agents of change in their communities.