More women want female genital mutilation stopped – Survey

Women protesting against a mining company in Ghana.
Women protesting against a mining company in Ghana.

A Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) conducted by the Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) on Female Genital Mutilation/Cut (FGM/C), has revealed that 94 per cent of women between the ages of 15-49 years want the practice stopped.

Only two per cent of the same ages approved of the practice.

Over all, the survey indicated that four per cent of the women had had any form of FGM.

The FGM practice was found to be most prevalent in the Upper West and East regions with 41 and 28 per cent rates respectively.

The same MICs data also showed that the proportion of the women that married before the age of 16 was six per cent whiles those who married before the age of 18 were 27 per cent.

On domestic violence, the MICS results revealed that 60 per cent of women approved of husbands beating their wives for various reasons with an acceptance rate of 70 per cent in the rural areas as compared to 51 per cent in the urban areas.

Interestingly, whiles 60 per cent of the women, who were often victims approved of wives beating, the results showed that only 36 per cent of men agreed that wife beating was justifiable for any given reason.

On Sexual Behavior Related to HIV Transmission, the survey established that about 10 per cent of young women age 15-25 years had sex before age 15 as compared to five per cent of young men of the same age group who had sex before age 15.

Additionally, the report showed that one in three women representing 35 per cent, who were married or in union, used any method of contraception, with 27 per cent using modern methods and 11 per cent using traditional methods.

The MICS was conducted in 2011 on broad topical issues spanning from nutrition, child health and protection, water and sanitation, literacy and education, reproductive health, HIV and AIDS and disparities in intervention coverage as well as an enhanced malaria module and biomarker.

Financial and Technical support was provided from UNICEF, USAID, UNFPA, the Japanese Government, the Ministry of Health/National Malaria Control Program, President’s Malaria Initiative and the Navrongo Health Research Centre.

Source: GNA

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