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Somalia seeks trial of female genital mutilation offenders after death of girl. Why it matters

With over 90 per cent of girls and woman subjected to the practice of female genital mutilation (FGM), the authorities in Somalia have said they will prosecute those responsible for the death of Deeqa Dahir Nuur, a 10-year-old girl who bled to death recently after the exercise

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With over 90 per cent of girls and woman subjected to the practice of female genital mutilation (FGM), the authorities in Somalia have said they will prosecute those responsible for the death of Deeqa Dahir Nuur, a 10-year-old girl who bled to death recently after the exercise.

The prosecution, if taken, would be the first of its kind in Somalia.

The move comes amid efforts this week, involving a number of Irish campaigners in Somalia, to build local alliances against FGM.

A week-long campaign was launched on recently in Mogadishu by the Somali-born Irishwoman, Ifrah Ahmed, whose Ifrah Foundation is working with the London-based Global Media Campaign Against FGM, run by the former journalist Maggie O’Kane, and supported by Irish and other EU diplomats in eastern Africa.

The campaign is seeking to enlist the support of local religious leaders for a so-called zero tolerance approach to FGM, and also using local media and medics to convince parents to cease subjecting their daughters to the practice. FGM has no medical benefit and predates both Islam and Christianity, but is linked to efforts to control female sexuality and reproduction.

Read Also: Last to abolish slavery, Mauritania still hunts anti-slavery activists

The death of Nuur days before the launch of the campaign received media attention in Somalia and internationally.

The girl had FGM performed on her on Sunday 15th July and died two days later from blood loss and further complications caused by tetanus.

The cut is understood to have severed artery – not a vein as earlier reported – leading to severe blood loss and tetanus. Deequ Dahir Nuur was cut in a “ceremony” with her three sisters, two were older and one younger.

According to sources in Somalia, all four were all subjected to the most extreme form of FGM which is the complete removal of the clitoris and labia using a knife or razor blade.

Culture

Nigerian first class traditional ruler, Ooni of Ife, makes Hollywood debut

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Nigerian first class traditional ruler, the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, has made an incursion into the movie world when he recently made a historic debut in a new Hollywood flick titled “Take Me Home.”

The revered King who played a unique role in the movie that succinctly befits his throne as the custodian of Yorubaland, said his role helped to further accentuate and brings royalty, honour and authority to the silver screen.

Produced by renowned produced by Yoruba historian and filmmaker Dotun Taylor, the film, “Take Me Home” centres on the quest for originality and identity.

According to Taylor, the movie “tells the story of an American girl who became possessed after wearing an African masquerade costume that was stolen during a tour in Ile-Ife.”

“In a bid to save her life, her entire family, guided by the promises of two African immigrants, embarked on a journey that would land them in hot waters.”

“As the spiritual and traditional leader of the Yoruba people now saddled with the responsibility of making supplications to God and the Òrìṣà on behalf of his people, Ooni boldly depicted the rich culture of the Yorubas and its relevance in the western world.”

The epic movie also features top Hollywood actors like Dave Sheridan, Amber Rivette, Felissa Rose, Meji Black, and Nollywood actors Abdullateef Adedimeji and Bayo Bankole (Boy Alinco) among others.

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Culture

Uganda Grammy nominee, Eddy Kenzo, using music to pave way for deprived kids

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Ugandan musician and first Grammy Awards nominee from the country, Eddy Kenzo, says he is using his music and status to pave the way for deprived kids in the East African country.

Kenzo who grew up as an orphaned and homeless kid, recounted his story on Thursday, said he used to struggle to persuade DJs to play his songs, but now, is using his success to offer hopes that even the poorest person can triumph.

Kenzo, whose real name is Edrisah Musuuza, was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Global Music Performance, said he has only one goal which is to “broadcast his culture to the world.”

“I try to use my culture and what I know to sell to the world. I sell the language that I speak, I sell the music we do here locally and I modernize it and put out the sound that comes from where I come from and it goes global,” the Grammy nominee told entertainment reporters.

Despite growing up underprivileged, Kenzo said he pursued his dreams and made a name for himself with his hit single “Stamina”, which grew to become one of the most popular songs in Africa and dominated the airwaves for months.

And despite his meteoric rise to stardom, Kenzo says he hasn’t forgotten his humble beginnings and is keen to pave the way for others like him.

Through his label Big Talent Entertainment, he now mentors Kampala’s disadvantaged youth to develop their musical talent.

Thirteen years after his big break, Kenzo is en route to take home a Grammy for “Gimme Love”, his 2022 Luganda-English song where he featured US musician Matt B.

“I love who I am, I love promoting who I am. I had to let him do what he does, but I had to make sure that I bring in myself in my own way. I started doing my Luganda and I taught him some of the pass, I told him to do it.

“And then this is what we did. And the message “Gimme Love” it’s all about giving love. Nothing could be better than that,” Kenzo said.

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