The United Nations’ Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women has begun a four-day consultation and dialogue with traditional and religious leaders on child marriage and female genital mutilation (FGM) in West and Central Africa.
The West and Central Africa Regional Consultations and Dialogue with traditional and cultural leaders and institutions aims to galvanise and amplify the efforts and strategies of the leaders in ending child marriage and FGM in the region.
Specifically, the consultations will address the key barriers to the implementation of sustainable initiatives led by traditional and religious leaders and institutions to end child marriage; initiate the establishment of a platform for advocacy, policy dialogue and scaling up of initiatives by traditional and cultural leaders and institutions to end the harmful practices in the region.
Also, the consultations will propose a framework for the AU summit with traditional and cultural authorities on ending child marriage and female genital mutilation.
In his remarks at the opening ceremony, the Obi of Onitsha, His Majesty Egwe Nnaemeka Alfred Ugochukwu Achebe said culture is not static and can be changed to benefit the people.
He emphasized the need to promote education for the African girl.
Religious and traditional rulers from different countries in Africa who graced the event, are currently deliberating on means to end early child marriage and FGM in the continent.