Press release: New research on FGM in Uganda


12 July 2013

28 Too Many’s new Country Profile of FGM in Uganda confirms that the overall rate of FGM is low in Uganda and positive action has led to a reduction in the Eastern region of the country. However FGM continues despite new legislation against the practice and the overall rate across Uganda has increased from 0.6% in 2006 to 1.4% in 2011. 

This new report provides consolidated and objective information on FGM in Uganda and on national efforts to eradicate the practice. It also provides an accurate basis from which future change can be measured.

28 Too Many founder and Executive Director, Dr Ann-Marie Wilson commented, “Since my first visit to Uganda in 2004 much progress has been made in the fight against FGM but this latest research shows that the challenge in ending the practice remains high. It seems that the last few miles of the journey to end FGM could prove to be the hardest. However the positive outcomes in some areas show that change is possible and with clear plans, resources and determination Uganda can continue to make good progress in ending FGM especially where there is a focus on providing education and engaging communities in making the change.”

“With over 56 organisations currently campaigning to end FGM in Uganda, the drive and commitment exists among Ugandans to end FGM. These groups are however sometimes isolated and uncoordinated, and programmes and results are not always communicated publicly. Our report aims to make their voices heard and help them continue on the road to positive change and the eradication of FGM.”

For media enquires only, please contact our Louise Robertson on 07957 805354 or email louise.robertson54@gmail.com

 

Notes to the editor:

Highlights from the Report

  • Across Uganda FGM in 15-49 year olds is 1.4% (DHS, 2011) and is low compared to many other African countries. However despite a decrease in FGM in the Eastern region of the country, the overall rate has increased from 0.6% in 2006 to 1.4% in 2011.
  • The highest rates are found in the Karamoja region (4.5%) and Eastern region (2.3%). All other regions have prevalence rates below 2% (DHS, 2011).
  • Uganda has specific laws against FGM including the 2010 anti-FGM Act and where there is training and positive action to enforce the law FGM appears to be decreasing.  However there are reports that the practice is going underground and girls continue to be cut. 
  • FGM is mainly found in remote rural communities in Uganda where it is deeply entrenched. Anti-FGM programmes need resources and focus to overcome the difficulties in reaching these groups. 
  • Investing in education, especially for girls, is one of the most powerful interventions in ending FGM. Rates of literacy and school enrolment remain very low for the regions where FGM is practised (the literacy rate for Karamoja is 12% for men and 6% for women, compared to a national rate of 76.8% for men and 57.5% for women, and 50.3% of girls and 49.7% of boys of school going age in Karamoja have never accessed education).  
  • With over 80% of Africans attending a faith building once a week, religion and faith based organisations can be an agent of change and offer platforms for teaching, education and health provision regarding issues such as FGM.  Research has shown that FGM rates are significantly lower where schools and churches are well established compared to more remote communities.
  • There are more than 56 organisations campaigning to end FGM in Uganda and working to support women/girls affected by FGM using a variety of approaches. 

 

The full Country Profile can be downloaded at here

28 Too Many is a charity working to end female genital mutilation (FGM). Our primary focus is on research and enabling local initiatives to end FGM in the 28 African countries where it is practised and across the diaspora. We also network and advocate for the global eradication of FGM, working closely with other charities/NGOs in the violence against women sector.