Attitudes to female genital mutilation/ cutting among male adolescents in Ilorin,Nigeria
Background. The central role of males in female reproductive health issues in patriarchal societies makes them an important group in the eradication of female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C). Objectives. To determine knowledge about and attitudes to FGM/C among male adolescents, and their preparedness to protect their future daughters from it. Methods. A cross-sectional survey among male adolescent students in Ilorin, Nigeria. Participants completed a self-administered questionnaire after consent had been obtained from them or their parents. Statistical analysis was with SPSS version 20.0 (IBM, USA). A p-value of <0.05 was taken as significant. Results. Of 1 536 male adolescents (mean age 15.09 (standard deviation 1.84) years, range 14 - 19), 1 184 (77.1%) were aware of FGM/C, 514 (33.5%) supported female circumcision, 362 (23.6%) would circumcise their future daughters, 420 (27.3%) were of the opinion that FGM/C had benefits, mostly as a necessity for womanhood (109, 7.1%), and 627 (40.8%) perceived it as wickedness against females; 546(35.5%) were aware of efforts to eradicate FGM/C, and 42.2% recommended education as the most important intervention to achieve this. Conclusion. Education and involvement in advocacy may transform male adolescents into agents for eradication of FGM/C.
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