July 20, 2010
The national prevalence rate of female genital mutilation (FGM) in Senegal stands at 28 percent, a report published over the weekend has revealed.
According to the report conducted under a plan to end FGM in the West African country, the practice is more prevalent in the southeastern and northern parts. In particular, the practice respectively stands at 94 percent and 93 percent in Kolda in the south and Tambacounda in the east.
The report also revealed that FGM is more common in rural areas than in urban areas, with 35 percent of rural women ages 15 to 49 undergoing the practice, compared with 22 percent of their urban counterparts.
Although the practice has been banned by law since 1999, it remains common among the Pulaar, Manding, Bambara, Serere and Diola ethnic groups.
Senegal and its partners are working towards the total elimination of the practice by 2015. Official figures show that more than 4,500 communities out of the 5,000 have already abandoned the practice.