March 5, 2024

2 min read


The National Assembly member for Foni Kansala, Hon. Almameh Gibba, has tabled the Women (Amendment) Bill 2024 aimed at lifting the ban on Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) in The Gambia. This bill has sparked a lot of confusion among the public, especially Islamic groups and activists who have made their stand clear for the practice to be criminalized.

Leading the fight to repeal the law, Hon. Almameh Gibba said the bill is meant to restore peace and order in the country, as the current regulation is discriminatory. "We don’t want instability in this country because if your religion and tradition are hampered, it has no place in the mindset of the people. If this bill is repealed, it will bring peace and social cohesion," he stated.

He underlined that the only way to ensure peace and stability in the country is for the FGM law to be repealed and for it to be a choice for anyone who wants to undergo the practice without consequences. "If this bill fails, it is the National Assembly that has failed their people. There are a lot of NAMs whose areas have a 99% prevalence of FGM. If they are ready to sacrifice their people against the bill, let them do it. Even if this fight ends today, we have demonstrated that there is a law that is discriminatory and not fit for purpose and needs to be repealed," he added.

He stated that he is doing what is right to fight a war to repeal this bill to ensure everyone is free to do what they want. He further stressed that even if the bill fails, they will continue to bring it back until it is repealed.

It has been over five years now since The Gambia passed the law to ban the practice of FGM during the former regime. Since then, not much has been done towards its implementation until lately, where perpetrators have been convicted. This has sparked tension between Civil Society Organizations, activists, Islamic leaders, and religious groups who see the practice as part of religion and culture, thus believing it should not be banned. However, the fate of the bill is uncertain. Will this bill make it out of the National Assembly?

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