Attitude toward female genital mutilation among Somali and Harari people, Eastern Ethiopia
New publication from Centre for Global Health participants.
Asresash Demissie Abathun (Faculty of Medicine, Institute of Health and Society, University of Oslo), Johanne Sundby (Department of Community Medicine and Global Health, Institute of Health and Society, University of Oslo) and Abdi A Gele (Department of Nursing and Health Promotion, Oslo and Akershus University College, Oslo)
Female genital mutilation (FGM) is a worldwide problem, and it is practiced by many communities in Africa and Asia as well as immigrants from those areas. This practice results in short- and long-term health consequences on women’s health. Like many other developing countries, FGM is widely practiced in Ethiopia, especially among Somali and Harari ethnic groups. Despite intensive campaigns against FGM in Ethiopia, since 2011, it has been practiced in the aforementioned communities. There is no recent information as to whether these campaigns have an impact on the attitude and practice of the community regarding FGM. This qualitative research was aimed at exploring the attitudes of Somali and Harari people between 18 and 65 years toward FGM.
The findings show that there is an attitudinal difference between the people in the two regions, which calls for behavioral change communication using women-centered approach and culturally appropriate strategies. As young people in both the regions had the intention to marry uncircumcised girls, there has to be a strong advocacy and multisectoral collaboration to stop FGM in both the regions.