health WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 13, 2017 41 Circumcision not an excuse for promiscuity, says expert Mudiaga Affe, Calabar A public health professional and lecturer at the University of Calabar, Cross River State, Dr. Antor Ndep, has said that promiscuity is not an excuse for girls to be genitally mutilated or circumcised. Ndep has described as false the excuse given by those who engage in the act of female genital circumcision to reduce acts of promiscuity among girls and women. She said that efforts should be made to eradicate female genital mutilation in the country. According to her, promiscuity has more to do with what is being fed into the brain through information gathered from pornographic videos, social media sites and other forms of social interactions. The don said this in Calabar on Tuesday during a media round table on Female Genital Mutilation/Circumcision organised by Safehaven Development Initiative, a non-governmental organisation. She argued that no female adult or child that had gone through the rigours of circumcision would be happy recalling the experience. “It is not the genital that promotes promiscuity but the brain. What information do you feed the brain with? What do you see? Do you for instance allow your children to watch just anything on the television or have access to the internet on their phones. It is what they feed their brains with that causes promiscuity and not the cutting of the clitoris. “The female genital mutilation has mental health implications. There is hardly any female that has gone through the process that you will ask to recall her experience and will not shed tears. It disrupts the ability of some women to maintain a healthy sex life, among others.” Executive Director of Safehaven Development Initiative, Mrs. Margaret Onah, noted that FGM practitioners must realise that the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act of 2015 prescribed a fine of N200, 000 or an option of two-year jail term for any person who committed the offence. Unfortunately, she lamented the laws were not being implemented, adding that the media had a critical role to play in ensuring that the campaign against FGM got to every nook and cranny of the country. Onah noted that most hE World health Organisation on Tuesday said that more than 500 people had so far died in cholera outbreak at the Democratic Republic of Congo. The world body said in a statement that outbreaks of the water-borne disease occurred regularly in Congo, “Cross River has 18 LGAs and, in 16 of them, this issue of circumcision is still high. As a result of our advocacy, some of the communities have reduced the practice but we hope to achieve further success in the campaign against the practice,” she said. •Hygeia’s Chief Information Officer, Mr. Omoshola Yusuf; Head, Corporate Business Development, Mr. Ekeno Eyo, the company’s Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Obinnia Abajue, and Head Retention Management , Mrs. Oladoyin Sagoe; Head Planning and Retail Hygeia; Mr. Obinna Ukachukwu, at the Healthcare Stakeholders Conference in Lagos …recently. Photo: HYGEIA Islam not against family planning – Sultan Eniola Akinkuotu, Abuja T hE Sultan of Sokoto and Spiritual Leader of Muslims in Nigeria, Muhammad Abubakar III, has said that Islam is not against the use of contraceptives or child spacing. he, however, said the message of the advocates of child spacing must be modified in such a way that it would be acceptable to the people. Abubakar said this while delivering a speech at the fifth Annual Family Planning Consultative Stakeholders Meeting in Abuja on Monday. The theme of the event was ‘Investing in Family Planning: Key to Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals in Nigeria.