News & events


12 August 2014

South Africa: Ban Unsterile Traditional Circumcisions, Say Scientists

News from Africa

A South African (SA) group of scientists and public health experts have called for unsterile traditional male circumcision practices, blamed for often causing death in young initiates, to be banned.

In a letter published in the South African Medical Journal in August 2014, written by Prof. Olive Shisana, the Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC) chief executive with fellow scientists from the council, the SA Medical Research Council (MRC) and the Wits Reproductive Health and HIV Institute, reads:

“The time has come to show leadership in dealing with this major public health issue, which is a cause of great concern and embarrassment to all our citizens.”

“We believe that decisive action cannot be postponed any longer. Even one more death or penile amputation of an initiate is one too many.”

In Eastern Cape, especially Pondoland, remains the epicentre of the circumcision related deaths with 38 deaths of initiates and 10 amputations recorded there between May and July this year.

Read the article online

News from Africa

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