Girl, 17, flees home over forced circumcision

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17-year-old girl, Miss Patricia Youmgbo, has been declared missing by family members after she reportedly fled home to avoid circumcision.

The Newsmen learnt that the girl’s decision to run away from home followed the death of her younger sister, Joy, after she was forced to undergo circumcision on January 15.

An uncle to the missing girl, Mr. Jonah Youmgbo, told NAN that Patricia had fled the family home in Amassoma, Southern Ijaw Local Government Area of Bayelsa since Feb. 14.

Youmgbo said that the two sisters, who lived in Lagos, had came home in December 2012 to spend the Christmas with their grandmother in Amassoma.

He said that the girls’ grandmother and some extended family members had ordered the girls to be circumcised before returning to Lagos.

Newsmen learnt that it was the decision of the family that led to the forced circumcision of Joy, a development that triggered the excessive bleeding that eventually led to her death.

Youmgbo, who lamented the death of the teenager, said that Joy, who was full of life before the forced circumcision, died from injuries as a result of the crude traditional practice of female genital mutilation.

He explained that the victim, suffered severe excruciating pains for days after the mutilation of her genital before her death.

Youmgbo said that medical reports obtained after the death of Joy, showed that the 15-year-old died of “Post Circumcision haemorrhage”.

Newsmen learnt that it was the fear of falling victim of the same circumcision that made the elder sister, Patricia to flee the community since Feb. 14.

Youmgbo, who is a brother to the girls’ father, told Newsmen that a case of missing person had since been reported at the Amassoma Divisional Police headquarters.

He used the opportunity to call on Nigerians and Ijaw people in particular to desist from the “obnoxious” tradition of female genital mutilation.

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