Nigeria, due to its large population, has the highest absolute number of cases of FGM in the world, accounting for about 1 in 4 of the estimated 115–130 million circumcised women worldwide.

Percentage of girls and women aged 15 to 49 years who have undergone FGM

  • 25%

Political and legal context

  • Between 1999 and 2006 national legislation criminalising FGM was passed in some states
  • The Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act (2015) outlawed FGM practice in Nigeria. However, that law is only applicable in the Federal Capital Territory, and needs to be domesticated in other parts of the country.
  • About six states have domestic laws against the practice of FGM 

Key actors

  • Civil societies, as well as government bodies, are working closely with development partners to build advocacy and end FGM, including the UNICEF-UNFPA Joint Programme, and Population Council
  • Nigeria's first lady, Mrs. Aisha Buhari, officially launched the UNICEF-UNFPA Joint Programme. During this forum, wives of governors from states with a high prevalence rate made commitments to end FGM in their states. 

Our work in Nigeria, we will:

  • Work closely with the Federal Ministry of Health through the Family Health Department.
  • Empower young people to build the momentum to end FGM through our vibrant Youth Anti FGM network. 
  • Train key stakeholders on social change communications. 
  • Assist stakeholders to develop context specific end FGM work plans and initiatives, which will feed into the country's national social change communications strategy.
  • Focus on growing our membership base to include more organisations that share our vision to end FGM in Nigeria.     

Meet the Nigeria team