Ghanaian minister blames female mutilation for fistula cases

Many of the obstetric fistula cases reported in the northern regions of Ghana result from female genital mutilation (FGM), it has been claimed.

According to minister of health Dr George Adja Sipa-Yankey, women who have undergone circumcision are at a greater risk of suffering a fistula during childbirth, reports the Daily Guide.

He called on traditional rulers across the nation to use the respect they command in their communities to prohibit the "dehumanising" practice of FGM.

Speaking at the new Tamale Fistula Repair Centre, Dr Sipa-Yankey issued a reminder that it is illegal under Ghanaian laws.

He said his ministry would attempt to reduce the number of fistula cases by prioritising family planning to avoid unwanted pregnancies, but suggested that in order for progress to be needed on FGM, a widespread change in attitudes is required.

Last week, the Liberian Ministry of Health and the United Nations Population Fund launched a new fistula awareness campaign in the African nation.ADNFCR-2094-ID-19306975-ADNFCR