FG vows to stamp out breast ironing
The Federal Government has said it will not rest untill it stamps out the harmful practices of breast ironing among others meted out on young girls in the Federal Capital Territory, (FCT), and the nation at large.
Minister of Women Affairs, Barrister Uju Kennedy-Ohanenye, stated this during an advocacy and sensitization visit to Garki Chiefdom, Abuja Municipal Council with her senior management staff.
She expressed worries over the the unwholesome practice of ironing the breast of teenage girls residing at Kpaduma and Pygba communities of the FCT, citing damaging and health impacts of such harmful practices on girls and nursing mothers.
Barrister Kennedy-Ohanenye condemned the unwholesome practice and assured that Federal Government will scale up efforts at eradicating the ‘barbaric act’ with attendant negative effects on the welfare of the girl child.
According to a statement signed by her Special Assistant, Media, Ohaeri Joseph, the practice falls among gender- based violence. She solicited the partnership of the Garki District Heads and other local authorities towards eradicating the practice as it negates the renewed hope agenda of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu aimed at improving the welfare of women and the girl child.
“Breast ironing, which is being practised on some young girls as traditional rites meant to prevent early male attraction, rape among others, are practices that are totally unacceptable and form part of condemnable and harmful practices against the female gender which must be stamped out” she said
The minister pointed that empirical studies have shown that such traditional practices are behind times hence, behoves the Chiefdom, religious leaders as well as the government to ensure that such rites become a thing of the past.
“This age-long tradition could lead to cancer on the affected girls as it is capable of leading to nipple challenges in their future life as well as the production of sour breast milk for their infants which is dangerous to the growth and development of new born babies”
She said intensive enlightenment campaigns and sensitization will be carried out in the affected communities through town criers and other forms of information dissemination so that no one will give the excuse of “I was not informed” and after that, any parent who is found wanting will have to face the mobile court for appropriate sanctions as “every child is a government’s child”.