In the News : 37 year Old Woman Gives birth to 38 Children!!😱

A Ugandan Woman named Mariam Nabatanzi Babirye has the photo of herself, husband and some of her 38 Children splashed all over the pages of newspapers and social media.

As I stared at the photo of this “massive” family my jaws dropped open for a long while😱. Being a mother myself I can’t even begin to imagine having to go through birth pains 5 times not to talk of 38 times!! It is simply writing a suicide letter in my opinion. Expert says that having too many children increases a woman’s health risk

Mariam’s story is that she was given off in marriage at age 12 to a 40 year old man. A child abuse case, I mean I don’t understand the excuse that it Is because parents are ignorant that makes it easy to give away a child in marriage. This has to stop!

I believe it is only by sheer Providence that Mariam survived these births which were mostly probably delivered by a local midwife before she finally arrived at a hospital. Now the world knows her story. Haaaaa it is simply not a funny matter to me!!

By age 40 possibly the ware and tear of her body may soon start manifesting in form of one ailment or the other.

Medically the reason she has had multiple births is because she is hyper-ovulating. Meaning that she her ovaries releases multiple eggs monthly.
They say ignorance is costly and it is not an excuse. I can’t help but think about the what ifs of Maria’s case.
If only she and her husband had known better ; if only a family member or friend or neighbor had pointed her in the way of a permanent modern family planning method solution. Seriously somebody should have told her that her ovaries and even the uterus could be removed.

Anatomy – medicine. com

Somebody said the children didn’t look hungry or under nourished in the photo. Maybe because their father is a farmer? How big is his farm to be able to feed a family of 40 including making extra money to cloth and send them to school?

My what ifs returns… Seriously having too many children puts the mother, children and even the father at risk. High blood pressure from not having enough to care for them will set in.

Another angle to this is that government needs to better equip and strengthen primary health centers in villages and communities. It is my business; it is your business to save a mother and child.

Maternal deaths can be prevented through adequate health education and family planning.

Adebisi Adetunji (C)

Girls are beautiful Just as they are – Stop the Cutting #FGMC

fgmc-beautiful-as-god-made-them
My daughter and friends from church

6th  of February has been set aside as the International day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation and Cutting. Recently through the awareness on FGMC created by the radio drama serial, “Pim Pim Pim”, three girls ran to their local church to prevent being circumcised. Fortunately their local Pastor had the number put out on radio and so he called the line. The girls have since been rescued. Child protection is working on their case.

If only more parents will protect girls from having their vagina cut in the name of tradition.
This is still an issue in many communities in different parts of the world.

Some Reasons why it is practiced:
* FGMC is believed to be a girl’s right of passage to womanhood in many communities where it is practiced.
* To prevent a girl/woman from being promiscuous.
* To show chastity in a woman and therefore bring honor to her family.

Cost of Not Circumcising a Girl
* It is a cultural practice that is entrenched so much in communities where it is practice. Any girl who is not circumcised will not have a man willing to marry her.
* It is believed that such a girl/woman is loose. This tarnishes hers and her family’s image in the community.

Effect of FGMC on the wellbeing of a girl/woman
* Bleeding and loss of life
* Infection that could lead to difficulty in achieving pregnancy later on in life
* Difficulty in enjoying sex becomes a source of conflict between the woman and her husband.
* Mutilated vagina
* Complications during child birth

How can we stop this practice?

Engaging communities in the discussion about Female Genital Mutilation and cutting.

Creating more awareness that FGMC has no benefit

FGMC does not prevent promiscuity. There are girls who were circumcised and still keep chains of men.

Speak up and do more to STOP FGM/C

UN Women Statement on this year’s (2017) International Day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation

Adebisi Adetunji (C)

A Short Review of the Movie “SOLD” – Be Weary of Strangers

sold-movie-poster
Movie Poster

At the beginning of the movie we meet a young beautiful girl, Lakshmi playing and flying her free kite while her mother struggles with the farm work for the day. Soon the viewer finds outs why her mother is working so hard. Her father is incapacitated with a paralyzed arm with two fingers cut off. He looked frustrated and takes to staying out late and coming home drunk. His poor wife who had had a tough hard day’s work tucks him into bed.
The roof of their house is leaking and Lakshmi’s mother did her best to fix it with a few straws she could gather. At night when it rains the leaking roof showed that she had not been successful in mending the roof.
Lakshmi’s mother prays hard for her family, hoping that something would happen to alleviate their suffering and turn their story around for good. Theirs was a poor struggling family. During a community festival, a woman from the city stares hard at Lakshmi. Amidst the excitement and dancing, she approaches her. She showed her, her dazzling colorful bangles and jewelry. She tells Lakshmi that the city was a beautiful place to be and that it had the magic that could change a person’s fortune. Young Lakshmi was captivated. Later she discussed going to the city with the stranger in order to work and make some money to help mend their leaking roof. Her mother said no but her father had received payment from the woman to take Lakshmi to the city.

SOLD – A thriller based on the award-winning novel by Patricia McCormick – A young girl risks everything to gain freedom. SOLD was released as a movie in 2014 . My heart was pumping hard all the way as I watched to see what becomes of Lakshmi.

My heart pumped hard all the way as I watched to see what becomes of Lakshmi.

A movie with a powerful mind boggling message that leaves you angry at man’s inhumanity to innocent children but also leaves you with relief that some girls do survive the journey through sexual exploitation. No one should have to go through what girls like Lakshmi and others went through.

The movie shows viewers happy rare moments for the girls who must service their male customers on demand. It’s a group that supports each other even though they are suspicious of one another. No one really feels safe but they make the best of the world in which they have found themselves.

SOLD is a story that treats an issue we speak about in hush…hush tone boldly.

What I find worrisome is the fact that women are the perpetrators of this evil act: Child traffickers aided by men. Those who run the show in promoting baby factories, child labor claim it is a means to an end; a means of livelihood to the detriment of these girls who are beaten, raped and forced to have sex with horrible men.

Child trafficking is simply slavery ripping children of their innocence and future.

Protect children, Protect Girls

Adebisi Adetunji (C)

Pim Pim Pim! What?? Where? #Radio Drama Breaking

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Pim Pim Pim literarily means, “Cut cut cut”. What is been cut? Who is cutting? Is it painful? Is it harmful?

Someone is definitely cutting something and it turns into a serious saga!!

Pim Pim Pim is the story of a princess and her twin babies. What she proposed to do is a taboo in her community. The Royal chiefs become enraged…Her father the King might lose the throne if she insists. The whole community goes agog… who is going to save the day?!

Maybe the young doctor in the community, maybe the women, maybe the youths who are protesting….ITS A SERIOUS “SAGA” OR “GBEGE” AS WE SAY IN PIDGIN LANGUAGE.

It was fun producing the story for Amuludun F.M 99.1.       I had a great team to work with.

So do you want to know what is up with the Princess, her babies, the king, and community? Tune into radio stations in these states weekly:

SUPPORTED BY UNICEF
EBONYI, EKITI, IMO, OSUN AND OYO
MEDIUM: RADIO
PERIOD: 13 WEEKS: FROM JANUARY TO MARCH 2017
DURATION: 15 MINUTES

SOUTH EAST

1. HEARTLAND FM 100.5, Owerri (Radio Nigeria)  Wed 3.45pm Imo  Pim Pim Pim English

2. ORIENT FM 94.4, Owerri (Imo Broadcasting Corporation) Fri 10.45 am Pim Pim Pim Igbo. Repeat Broadcast Tues – 7.00pm

3. UNITY FM 101.5, Abakaliki (Radio Nigeria) Ebonyi  Sun 10.30am Pim Pim Pim English. Repeat Broadcast Tues- 1.45pm

4. SALT FM 98.1, Abakaliki (Ebonyi Broadcasting Corporation) Ebonyi Sat- 11.00am Pim Pim Pim Igbo Repeat Broadcast Wed – 5.00pm

SOUTH WEST

5. SPLASH FM105.5, Ibadan Oyo  Pim Pim Pim English – Sat 3pm

6 AMULUDUN FM 99.1, Moniya, Ibadan (Radio Nigeria) Oyo  Thurs 6.15pm Pim Pim Pim Yoruba

7. LIVINGSPRING FM 104.5, Osogbo (Osun State Broadcasting Corporation) Tues – 3.45pm Pim Pim Pim English

8. ORISUN FM 89.5, Osogbo (Osun State Broadcasting Corporation) Thur- 6.00pm  Pim Pim Pim Yoruba

9. EKITI RADIO FM 91.5, Ado Ekiti (Broadcasting Service of Ekiti State)   Fri 11.45am Pim Pim Pim English

10. PROGRESS FM 100.5, Ado Ekiti (Radio Nigeria) Thurs – 6.15pm Pim Pim Pim Yoruba.

Good news…The story is broadcasting in English, Yoruba and Igbo languages.

For comments, questions or inquiries call: 08173330586 OR email – pimpimpimng@gmail.com

Adebisi Adetunji (C)

A butterfly that never flew: Day of the African Child

A story is told of a caterpillar which was at the pupa stage and had  metamorphosed into a beautiful butterfly inside the pupa. The formed butterfly struggled to get out of the pupa and it looked like it was having a hard time. Butterfly emerging

A man was watching as this butterfly tried to get out of its pupa; he couldn’t wait and so he decided to help this butterfly by cutting through the pupa. Out came this beautiful butterfly with colorful wings but because it came out before it was ready, that butterfly could not fly like other butterflies. What is the use of a butterfly that can not fly…it would soon be stepped on by other animals or someone.

Many African girls are married off before they are ready to fly. Child marriage is one child abuse that needs to be stopped. Imagine giving  one of these beautiful girls away in marriage…!

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It is simply trapping them and cutting them off before they are ready to fly beautifully.

The International Day of the African child is celebrated on 16th June every year. It is in commemoration of students murdered  in Soweto,1976 for protesting against poor quality of education. They also demanded to be taught in their local language.

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This year’s theme: Conflicts and Crisis in Africa: Protecting all children’s rights. Every child has a right to be allowed to blossom fully into an adult in order have a fulfilled life.

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Photo Credit: Butterfly life cycle

Adebisi Adetunji(c)

Children’s Day Special: What a Girl must need Know – She didn’t know Girls menstruated until age 30+

There are a number of things a growing child should know and the home is the one  place children are taught and equipped with skills they need to cope with life as adults.

Camera 360
A girl like any other girl

Imagine a girl never knowing about menstruation until she became 30+ years old. This is not fiction but someone’s real life’s story. She was given in marriage just about when she started to get to  puberty. This lady had her babies in quick successions and while breast feeding she never menstruated. And so at 30+ years old  she found herself bleeding and thought something was wrong. She became worried visiting different doctors. Finally a  doctor asked her about when her last menstruation was and she stared back looking blank. It was discovered that she never knew that girls, women menstruated.

Seriously?!!! It is a bewildering story to me…i just felt it was so unfair! First her childhood was stolen from her by marrying her off so quickly then she never even got to learn the lessons of what attaining puberty means. How in heaven’s name would she even be able to teach her own girls what it means to menstruate and attain sexual maturity?

As a  parent take your children through the signs of puberty and allow your child especially the girl child to enjoy the process of becoming an adult.

As a mum i am going to teach my girl (and my boy of course) all she needs to know about her body and puberty. We seriously need to do more to prepare children for life by communicating needed information. Sexuality education is important, be there for your children as they go through the process of puberty.

Help STOP CHILD MARRIAGE!!!

Adebisi Adetunji (C)

 

An endangered Specie

DSC05393000TEACHER IN CLASS

This post Life of a nine year old by Folakemi, just made me realize that girls are largely the endangered specie when it comes to those who serve as house maids. I can’t imagine my 8yr old daughter serving as a house maid!! Ridiculous, mean and wicked! I know we blame poverty as the culprit of parents inability to take care of their children. It is better to have your child go to the farm with you and manage your meager resources than send him/her into slavery.

In some quarters the argument is that these maid services are offered in exchange for giving such a girl an education, trust me this hardly works except in a very few cases: one in 50. I have seen families withdraw a child from her kind boss who wants to give her a future just when she is making progress in school or in learning a trade. Her father, uncle, aunt or whoever is her guardian decides to give off in marriage.

Those who hire house maids seem not to have any law in place to check them. Such housemaids face all kind of abuse and danger. Their madam(boss) decides to keep them under lock and key the whole day so that they would not run away when other members of the family she is serving had gone to school or work. Imagine if such a maid is faced with an emergency such as a fire out break or simply a health problem that is a matter of life and death?! Other maids are beaten and have to live with marks and bruises. Others are denied food as punishment whenever they displease their master and still others service the sexual urge of the husband of madam or any other male in that household.

In the 21st century almost every household needs a help in the house to take care of the burden of household chores but should it be an excuse to be inhumane to a child? Next time you are tempted to thrash that your maid or maltreat her imagine it was your child!

And if you must engage the services of a maid, hire someone old enough not a child!!!

Adebisi Adetunji