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Supreme Islamic Council calls for repealing of FGM law

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By Omar Bah

The Gambia Supreme Islamic Council (SIC), has recommended for the National Assembly to repeal the law banning the practice of Female Genital Mutilation in The Gambia.  The council’s comments came at a time when Islamic leaders led by Imam Abdoulie Fatty are at loggerheads with anti-FGM campaigners following the recent conviction of three women for FGM at Niani Bakadagi.

In a statement shared with The Standard, the council urged lawmakers to repeal the law because it criminalises a Sunni circumcision, which should be left optional to whoever wants to practice it. “We should beware of enacting laws that prevent Muslims from practicing their beliefs and customs that Islam has abhorred,” it added.

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The council also encourage parliamentarians to consult scholars on issues affecting religion.

It warns those who take precedence over scholars to talk about what is halal or haram in religion without the requisite knowledge to do so.

The council also recommends training for female circumcisers to practice Sunni circumcision. It also expressed concern over the sentencing of the three women for practicing FGM.

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