By: Kruah Thompson
Vice President Jewel Howard Taylor, a strong campaigner of women’s rights and empowerment excepts to the three years suspension on female genital mutilation (FGM) here, calling for the construction of traditional schools to teach young girls and boys about traditional values.
She maintains that if Liberia must continue to exist and if Liberians want their traditions to be transferred from one generation to another, a key strategy is to operate traditional schools across the country.
Speaking in Monrovia at the official launch of an Anti-SGBV national call center and announcement of three years moratorium on female genital mutilation (FGM) characterized by the handing over of 15 motorbikes and four (4) vehicles to the Anti-SGBV task force, Vice President Taylor stressed that if this strategy is implemented, it will leave a serious mark on all of the hope and aspirations that the FGM roadmap document carries.
According to the Vice President, FGM plays a major part in traditional practices in Liberia, so it has created a different kind of focus on the way Liberians see their traditions.
Madam Taylor continues that as a traditional child-woman herself she hopes that someday, Female Genital Mutilation will be rooted out from the traditions so that her daughter or granddaughter would have an opportunity to attend traditional school and learn about the traditions of the Kpelleh tribe in Bong County and the traditions of the people of Lofa. Mrs. Taylor’s parents hailed from both counties.
“Because of FGM being a part of our tradition, my mother didn’t go to the Sande and Poro societies, she didn’t send me either and I am surely not going to send my children.” She notes.
According to the VP, if the necessary changes are made, she would want her children to go to these schools to learn the concept of what it is to be a fully empowered traditional daughter.
“We must create traditional schools that we can put our traditional women who are knowledgeable about these things to teach our Liberian daughters what they should be learning.”
Also speaking, the Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection Wilhelmina Saydee Tarr recalls that in September 2021 when the nation began to experience high increase in sexual and gender-based violence issues, President George Weah formulated a task force to create awareness in the country, especially against rape.
Minister Tarr details that the task force consisted of 85 to 90 persons from the cabinet that the President asked to put hands around the Ministry of Gender in finding ways to fight gender issues.
She says for this purpose President Weah has provided 15 motorbikes and four vehicles to help in the fight against SGBV practices in Liberia.
The Gender boss says the work of the task force is to curtail the increment of rape cases and to define a new solution to tackling FGM and trafficking.https://thenewdawnliberia.com/eu-envoy-recognizes-gol-efforts-on-fgm/ Editing by Jonathan Browne