"Let me tell you about some of my latest discoveries in some countries;
: Some of the things you may not know is that in rural Madagascar, till date twins are seen as a curse.
In this village, the dead make the rules.
The mother of the twin is left with no option than to abandon the children if she still wants to be part of the community, but if she decides otherwise, she'll be forever banned and isolated from the rest of all.
There is a woman currently considered as the most cursed woman in Madagascar, her crime?
She had three twinsets.
When the high chiefs were asked if it's possible to reconsider this tradition, they said No.
That's it's culture and it must be upheld.
: In Tanzania, there's something called 'Witch Trial.' In 2016, more than 400 women were burnt to death in a particular community for allegedly being witch.
Here, the witch doctor which is always a man identifies women who are witches, and in most cases they are murdered and after which, their corpses are set ablaze or they are eternally isolated from their families and community.
You can be tagged a witch for things as little as not letting a man take over your land ETC.
Only women are considered witches.
: Here, there's something called "Bacha Posh", a situation where girls become boys. You often hear the parents say; "She is my Son." There's a stigma attached to having just female children, so to wither this shame, one of the female children becomes a sacrificial lamb.
This child becomes all things a boy.
Ranging from dressing to answering a boy's name, doing male dominated sports and to taking up every role associated with men in Afghanistan.
It is however a deep secret that should never be discovered by the public.
These kids take up this roles as early as age 1, and I'm making a research to find out what happens to them when they grow up.
:These people practice what is called "Fed to Wed," which is an ancient tradition of force feeding girls.
The girls from infant are fed with milk, rice and other fattening foods non stop all day long, as they believe it will make them grow so fast and start putting on adult clothes, and in turn get married as early as possible. Reminds of you of how chickens are fattened up so they can be sold in the market right?
: It is not enough that girls are subjected to child marriage here, but there's a very high level of child labor.
The more wicked thing is these girls are bullied, and also are subjected to more child labor than their male counterparts because they are, well; girls.
These children do things like carrying, mixing and moulding of cements.
: Here there is an epidemic of child marriage. And so it is in other parts of the world like; India, Ethiopia, Zambia, Kenya, Tanzania (here, they'll often say that getting cows as bride trade is more important than keeping their daughters, because when girls go, cows stay), Azerbaijan, Malawi, Niger, Northern Ghana, Lebanon, Nepal, South Sudan ETC. with jacket items to wear of the occasions
In fact in Yemen, Child Marriage and Marital rape is still legal.
In Yemen also, when the bride is a child like 7 or 8 years old, only men will be seen in attendance at the wedding. Women and even the bride don't attend.
I won't forget that Nigeria is included in this category too.
I'll stop here for now.
And I hope you'd always remember each time you mention the word 'culture' that it is us, me and you that make culture.
And here is also a little reminder to you whenever you want to compare the western feminism to Nigerian feminism.
When you critically analyze it with an unbiased mind, you can agree with me that there's no way whatsoever the feminism can be the same.
These westerners do not have 75% of the problems we have, yet we have all the problems they have.
How many of them have to battle with female genital mutilation, child bride, being tagged a witch especially because you're an old woman suffering from dementia? ETC.
When exactly are we going to stop violating human and womens' rights in the guise of culture?
We have to start from us.
From Nigeria, because charity begins at home!"
Written by Favour C. Ogbonnaya