Islam does not support female genital mutilation (FGM) since the practice is inhumane and violates the rights of women and girls.
While addressing the media in Nairobi on the position of Islam with regard to FGM, Kenya’s Muslim scholars led by deputy Chief Kadhi Sheikh Rashid Ali Omar said there was no element in Islamic law that supports FGM.
“We have not heard any of the Prophet Muhammed’s daughters who were subjected to FGM”, said Sheikh Omar.
He said that the predominantly Muslim pastoralist communities of northeastern Kenya borrowed the practice from the Egyptian culture and linked it to Islam. He urged them to desist from the practice.
“The act itself is a violation of both Islamic law and the prohibition of FGM Act, 2011. Therefore, it is sinful for Islamic women and girls to undergo FGM,’’ noted Omar.
In his remarks, Prof. Omar Al-Bashir from Green Field International called upon the public to differentiate between the cultural and religious practices and stop linking Islam with some of the outlawed cultural practices.
The scholars pledged their support to the government in its bid to eradicate FGM in the country.
They further urged the Anti – FGM Board to translate anti – FGM campaign materials into local dialect to enable people who do not speak English and or Kiswahili languages to comprehend the messages.
According to Kenya Demographic and Health Survey 2014, 21% of women in Kenya have undergone FGM. The prevalence rate remains high amongst some communities such as the Somali at 94%, Samburu at 86%, Kisii at 84% and Maasai at 78%.