Akintoye Emily Obaide, Akintoye Onome Pearl and Adjene Josiah Obaghwarhievwo

Despite global concerns, awareness, and campaigns against Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), prevalence remains high in most countries of the globe, especially Africa. Current study investigated the knowledge, attitude and public perception on FGM of Bini indigenes who reside in Oredo Local Government Area of Edo State, Southern Nigeria. A total of one hundred and fifty (150) participants were ethically recruited from Benin City, Nigeria. An open ended questionnaire of about the same number (n = 150) was carefully structured, validated and distributed to participants in order to ascertain their level of awareness and understanding of the socio-cultural implications of FGM. An oral interview was also conducted on participants to determine the effect of their level of education on possible promulgation of FGM within the study area. Sociodemographic data of respondents were also collected and comparisons made across gender, age and religious lines on beliefs and practices of FGM. Sections of the questionnaire were subjected to statistical analysis after data collection, results expressed in simple percentages. After careful observation, study found that about 74.5% of the respondents were ill-informed on the cultural norms and principles of FGM in line with global best practices of the World Health Organizations (WHO). However, not fewer than 36.3% of the respondents show adequate knowledge on the concept of FGM. Study also observed that a great percentage of educated respondents strongly opposed to the idea of FGM. This implies that educational health campaigns against FGM could be useful in combating the hazardous implications of FGM on the socio-cultural well-being of the female child. Continuous education geared towards global best practices in study area is highly recommended.

Keywords: Female Genital Mutilation, Knowledge, Attribute, Tradition

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