GAMCOTRAP and NPWJ organise a national workshop to foster implementation of the law banning FGM in The Gambia

6 Feb, 2016 | Press Releases

Banjul, Gambia, 6 February 2016
On the occasion of the International Day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation, GAMCOTRAP and No Peace Without Justice, in partnership with the Inter-African Committee for Traditional Practices Affecting the Health of Women and Children (IAC) and the Gambian Women’s Bureau, and with the support of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, is organising a national workshop entitled “Ban FGM: A Law Ending FGM in The Gambia”.

The event, which will be held in Bakau Stadium in The Greater Banjul Area, will comprise representatives of the government as well as the general population, including 80 community-based facilitators, 80 ex-circumcisers, 20 women leaders and 30 young people drawn from the seven administrative regions of the Gambia.

On  28 December 2015, the National Assembly of Gambia adopted the Women’s Amendment Bill 2015 which bans Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and sets strict penalties for offenders. According to the bill, a person who engages in female circumcision could face up to three years in prison or a fine of 50,000 dalasi (£851). If the act results in death, a person could face life imprisonment. The adoption of the bill follows an executive pronouncement and decision by President Yahya Jammeh of Gambia to ban FGM.

The adoption of the bill is a concrete answer to the voices of the numerous communities which over the past eight years have publicly demonstrated their willingness to end FGM. It also reinforces the legitimacy and impact of the advocacy and awareness efforts carried out by civil society groups such as GAMCOTRAP under the tireless leadership of its president, Isatou Touray, to bring an end to this human rights violation.

In the wake of the passage of the new legislation banning FGM in Gambia, this event aims to strengthen awareness-raising and advocacy activities about its implicationsboth among representatives of the government as well as the general population, and to ensure its effective application.

As called for by the United Nations General Assembly Resolution 69/150, the adoption and the enforcement of explicit and effective legislation, backed by sanctions, banning all forms of FGM are fundamental and crucial factors to successfully combat this form of gender-based violence, protect its victims and end impunity. In addition to holding perpetrators to account, legislation protects and provides the legal tools for women and girls willing to defy the social pressures of tradition and reject FGM, and also establishes the legal environment that legitimizes and facilitates the advocacy and educational work of local anti-FGM activists and women’s rights groups.


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For more information, contact Alvilda Jablonko, Coordinator of the Gender and Human Rights Program, on, phone: +32 494 533 915 or Nicola Giovannini, email:, phone: +32 2 548 39 15.