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[Published: Wednesday October 15 2008]

Uganda community bans female circumcision

Kampala , 16 Oct-(ANA)- Acommunity in eastern Ugandahas banned the deeply rooted practice of female genital mutilation (FGM) sayingit was outmoded and not useful for the communitys women.

The Sabiny are the onlygroup in Ugandathat practises FGM, which involves cutting off a young girl's clitoris.

Kapchorwa district chairmanNelson Chelimo said the council had submitted legislation to parliament for theban to become law nationwide.

"The community decidedthat it was not useful, that women were not getting anything out of it, so thedistrict council decided to establish an ordinance banning it," Mr Chelimotold AFP news agency.

He said there was a localbelief that women who married without circumcision would be stricken byillness, but that this was "really outmoded".

FGM is seen in somecountries as a way to ensure virginity and to make a woman marriageable.

In Africa,about three million girls are at risk of FGM each year, according to the UN.

UN agencies have called fora major reduction in the practice by 2015.

They say it leads tobleeding, shock, infections and a higher rate of death for new-born babies. (ANA)

FA/ANA/16 October 2008---

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