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Norway: The Oslo Islamic Fatwa against Female Genital Mutilation signed by religious leaders

Posted by African Press International on August 31, 2012

REPOSTING DUE TO PUBLIC DEMAND: Posted by African Press International for the first time on November 20, 2011

By API

www.africanpress.me - PAWA President in Norway at the conference during the signing of Fatwa Against Female Genital Mutilation in Clarion Hotel Royal Christiania in Oslo, Norway on the 19th November 2011

http://www.africanpress.me – PAWA President in Norway at the conference during the signing of Fatwa Against Female Genital Mutilation in Clarion Hotel Royal Christiania in Oslo, Norway on the 19th November 2011

PAWA’s President Regina Adahada who originally comes from Nigeria, now living in Norway, openly displays signs of satisfaction after her group managed to organise a very successful conference on FGM in Oslo, Norway this weekend. The Oslo Islamic Fatwa against female genital mutilation (FGM) was signed at the end of the conference by a group of religious leaders, among others. The conference was organised jointly by Pan-African Women’s Organization (PAWA) and Musukubeng Kaffo (MKBK).

Before the signing of the Fatwa there was a presentation of the declaration for signatures by the President of Pan-African Women’s Organization Regina Adahada and the President of Musukubeng Kaffo(MKBK) Fotou Dampha.

Issuing a Fatwa is serious step, one that is used by Muslims world over who view Sharia law as a guide to good Muslim-hood. By signing a Fatwa, the organizers of the conference say Female genital Mutilation must be stopped by all means globally.

Female genital mutilation has been practised by Muslims, Christians and other faith communities. Whether this tradition is religion or not, the practice is disastrous to those who go through it willingly or forcefully. This is a form of violence against women and young girls.

The  whole day conference that started at 9.00, ending 16.00 was officially opened by Her Excellency the Ambassador of South Africa to Norway Ms. Beryl Rose Sisulu who called on other ambassadors in Norway to engage in the good work already started by the conference organizers to protect the rights of the women.
VIDEO interview with the South African Ambassador to Norway Ms Beryl Rose Sisulu:

Leaders who graced the occasion came from the US, Nigeria and Somalia.

Guest speaker Imam (Dr) Sheik Daud Bojang from the Islamic council of Atlanta in the USA emphasised on the consequences of female genital mutilation on women and girls from the perspective of a diaspora leader. He gave examples of how the mutilation does harm to the women and her pride as a complete human being.

At the start of the conference, Imam (Dr) Muhammad Nuruyan Ashafa and Pastor (Dr) James Movel Wuye from the Interfaith Mediation Centre Kaduna in Nigeria  gave their perspectives on FGM. The two leaders are championing the fight against this harmful tradition in the Northern parts of Nigeria. They told the conference of the struggles they undergo to actualized their goals.

Poem on the empowerment of women globally, by a Kenyan poet:

The audience became deeply involved in the contents of the poem, some even to tears, when a Kenyan writer and poet Philo Ikonya read a poem on the empowerment of women. She is a human rights activist and had no trouble gearing and engaging the conference delegates during the 15 minutes she had the floor by bringing the reality of the woman’s need for freedom closer to them.

Her poem was a spirited demand for a woman’s freedom through empowerment in order to enable her to prosper and be proud of herself.

Presentation of a book on the empowerment of foreign women in Norway:

After the poem read by the Kenyan writer and poet Ms Ikonya, the conference was treated to a book presentation on women empowerment by Elizabeth Urassa. She made a  presentation of her book on the empowerment of foreign women living in Norwegian society took the centre stage. She told the conference participants of the challenges many African women face and the difficulties they go though in the Norway. Urassa emphasised on the need to empower the African woman in Norway so that they may be able to stand tall and make her own decisions without having to depend on their men in everything.

Her book may stand as a challenge to married men in Norway who may view her points as a direct challenge to their role as the head of the family. However, she reiterated that the men should be aware that women have a place in the society and should be encouraged to find their own way to solidify themselves whereby their status is respected and given room to exercise freedom of thought and action without any hinderance.

The morning session of the conference was led by Amina Mahama – PAWA After the morning session and a one hour lunch break, the conference resumed. Another guest speaker Imam Seddy Janneh of Gambian origin living in Sweden took the delegates through the  consequences of female genital mutilation and expounded on the challenges he and other leaders face in this journey to understand and stop the practice. He told the audience of his experiences in The Gambia and in Scandinavia  summing up the positive sides if one adhered to the fatwa that seeks to stop the practice once and for all in order to avoid further harm to the women. Guest speaker from Norway, Mamadi Jobarteh gave his views on FGM and his expressed concern on its impact on young girls in Africa and Norway.He told the conference that he has daughters and will not allow anybody to circumcise them, while warning those who take the children of their relatives and force them to be circumcised without the knowledge of the parents.He said it was time to stamp out the practice completely. He caused laughter in the conference hall when he narrated a story from his home country The Gambia where he had a serious conversation with his mother about the need to stop circumcision of women. According to him, his mother was not ready to accept his suggestions, accusing him of being Westernised by his many years stay in Norway. He managed, however, to continue the discussion with his mother ending up winning her to accept his thoughts. He reiterated the need to be patient and go slow on those who are no yet ready to understand that the practice is primitive and has to end. The last speaker to take the floor, before the conference delegates were treated to the closing remarks by PAWA’s vice President Benter Adhiambo, was Professor Yahya Amir from Somalia who also signed the Fatwa alongside the religious leaders. Professor Amir told the conference of the cruelty young girls go through in Somalia, where most of them are exposed to health hazards thereafter. He stated that some of the girls being circumcised easily get infected through germs generated by the use of dirty instruments used. The Professor sent a chilly cloud to the delegates in the hall when he narrated how some who perform the practice caring less about the health hazards are using sharpened wood from fallen trees from the forest to mutilate the private parts of the girls when they do not access knives or any other sharp instruments. He stressed his opposition to female circumcision, saying he has 8 daughters of his own, with one wife – the eldest one being 16 years of age, while the youngest is 6 months old. His statement to the effect that he will not accept to have them to undergo such torture was well received with chorus clapping of hands by the delegates. Fatwa against FGM signatory Professor Yahya Amir from Somalia addressing the conference in Oslo

Declaration

The final act at the conference was the presentation of the declaration on Fatwa against genital mutilation in an effort to eliminate the violation of women’s bodies world-wide.
VIDEO Presentation:
The Presentation of the declaration for signatures
Discussion – Debate
After the signing ceremony of the Fatwa against FGM, the guest speakers sat in a row and engaged in an open discussion – debate with eager conference participants. Here below are three videos resulting from the panel session.
Video Part 1 of 3

Video Part 2 of 3

Video Part 3 of 3

Closing statement by PAWA’s Benter Adhiambo

In her closing statement PAWA’s vice President Benter Adhiambo thanked the delegates and guest speakers for their participation, but not before telling them of the need for equality between man and woman in the home. She emphasized, however, that equality in the home must not be driven by greed and force, but through respect and understanding the needs of a partner.

She told the gathering that women are now activating themselves and performing duties that the men have failed to do. She added that although the man is still powerful in the home, it must be made clear to all that working together in order to achieve the necessary goals in life acceptable to both man and woman must be given priority and attention required in every situation.

She ended her remarks by thanking the conference sponsors – the Norwegian Directorate of Health, FOKUS organization, (Growth and development for children, youth and families) – Child/Youth  and family department in Oslo City Council.

 

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CONFERENCE MODERATORS:
PAWA ORGANIZATION – MODERATOR MORNING SESSION:
www.africanpress.me. PAWA member - FGM conference moderator morning session Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me. PAWA member – FGM conference moderator morning session Oslo 19.11.2011

MKBK ORGANIZATION – MODERATOR AFTERNOON SESSION:

www.africanpress.me. MKBK member - FGM conference moderator morning session Oslo 19.11.2011

SOME CONFERENCE DELEGATES TOOK TIME FOR FREE PHOTO OPPORTUNITY AS MEMORY:
CLICK TWICE DIRECTLY ON THE PHOTO TO VIEW A LARGER SIZE:

www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

http://www.africanpress.me photo: Delegates take time for free photo opportunity with African Press International at the end of FGM Conference: Oslo 19.11.2011

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HAVE YOUR SAY ON THE BANNING OF FEMALE GENITAL MUTILATION

THE POLL:

VOTE NOW

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Related article:

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Search tips: clarion hotel royal Christiania, south african ambassador, female genital mutilation, islamic fatwa, and Norway ms.

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One Response to “Norway: The Oslo Islamic Fatwa against Female Genital Mutilation signed by religious leaders”

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