Female genital mutilation in the Kolda Region of Senegal: A practice that persists

| March 1, 2021

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In keeping with this edition’s attention to gender issues, our Script of the Week focuses on female genital mutilation.

In 2016, UNICEF estimated that at least 200 million girls and women had experienced female genital mutilation in 30 countries: 27 African countries, plus Yemen, Iraq, and Indonesia.

In Senegal, the region of Kolda is one of the localities most affected by the practice. It is a tradition that leaves its victims scarred with a lot of consequences: pain, hemorrhage, infection, and trauma. The after-effects are persistent and can lead to frigidity, complications in childbirth, and sometimes, death.

In this radio script, a midwife, a victim, and a former practitioner discuss the different types of female genital mutilation and their consequences, as well as the reasons for the practice and the efforts to eradicate it.

To produce a program on female genital mutilation, you may wish to draw inspiration from this text. If you choose to present it as part of your health program, you can use voices to represent the different contributors. In this case, please tell your audience at the very beginning of the program that the voices are those of actors and not of the actual people interviewed.

If you are creating your own programs on female genital mutilation, talk to people who have been subjected to the practice in your area, talk to their families, talk to those who perform it, and talk to medical experts. You may wish to ask them the following questions:

  • How do people in your area perceive female genital mutilation?
  • What are the different procedures?
  • What are the consequences of FGM?
  • Is there any legislation that prohibits the practice? If so, is it effective?
  • Why does such a dangerous practice still persist?