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Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Candidates get rapped for ignoring abuses, FGM

September 8, 2010 
Lilian Kallaghe / The Citizen

Dodoma, Tanzania - Civil society organisations (CSOs) dealing with human rights in the country have asked people not to vote for candidates who fail to censure human rights abuses.

In their deliberation at the end of a meeting held here recently, about ten CSOs expressed disappoitment with candidates who failed to rebuke female genital mutilation (FGM) in their campaign rallies fearing that speaking against the ritual would cost them votes.

“Some candidates do not want to condemn FGM in their campaign rallies. 

That is why the habit persists despite efforts to educate wananchi on its negative impacts,” said Ms Anna Henga, a coordinator from the Legal and Human Ruights Centre (LHRC).
During the meeting, it was also established that FGM has been going on in some parts of
the country because people had been using various methods to evade the law.

“Some are taking the young girls to other regions, or even to neighbouring countries, where vigilance against FGM is very minimal. 

They know that by doing so they will not be identified easily,” she said. The CSOs reminded the candidates that many of the voters are women who happened to be the main victims of
the ritual. They noted that supporting FGM was against the country’s laws and international