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Gov’t Speaks Out On Forced Circumcision Of Male Babies

The State Minister of Health – General Duties, Sarah Opendi has revealed that there are no records showing forced circumcision of male babies is taking place in Busolwe hospital in ButaleJa district as claimed.

In a statement dated July 18, 2018 to Parliament, Opendi says in October 2017, only two circumcisions based on clinical diagnosis were carried out on babies aged two years and below in Busolwe hospital, and since then no other has occurred according to the records obtained from Busolwe hospital.

Her remarks  follow a concern raised by Othieno Okoth Richard, MP West Budama North on Wednesday 11th July, 2018 over forced circumcision of male babies by the hospital staff in Busolwe hospital in ButaleJa district.

“The clinical diagnosis stated that both children had a condition known as Phimosis. Phimosis occurs when a male baby is born with the foreskin closed resulting into difficulty or painful urination and increased risk to Urinary Tract Infections (UTls). This prompts the health workers to carry out circumcision in order to ease the passage of urine as well as reduce the baby’s risk to UTls,” the Minister said.

She added: “I therefore request the Hon Member, to provide details of the children and their parents so that we can follow these cases up and take the necessary action against the staff after ascertaining the truth.”

According to the Safe Male Circumcision Policy 2010, Medical male circumcision should be promoted and is available for all age groups.

In Uganda, circumcision in males below 18 years is carried out after written consent is obtained from the parents, guardians or caretakers while males above 18 years, a written consent is sought from the individual before the procedure.

Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision also known as Safe Male Circumcision is the surgical removal of foreskin of the penis, a practice that is undertaken for medical, religious or cultural purposes.

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