Lead Author: BASHER Salmah Lao
Published by: International Journal of Humanities and Social Sciences
Year published: 2016

Female circumcision (FC) is a literal translation from the Meranao term “Turi” which 6refers to several traditional procedures that involve injuring women genitals. This cultural practice has long been treated a critical women health concern by the World Health Organization and other national and international health organizations due to its dangerous effect to physical and mental implications. This study intends to explore the different stages of female circumcision among Meranaos, the prevalence rate of this practice and the stand of religious leaders on FC. This study utilized a combination of quantitative and qualitative methods using a specially designed questionnaire, interview and focused group discussions with the 30 “Manunuris” (the one who perform FC) and 30 religious leaders as respondents. The results showed that there are three stages of FC. The first stage is done during childhood that is preferably the girl is below ten years tice of age. The second stage is done once the girl turned to be a woman and still in the early marriage of her life. And the last stage is during late adulthood when the woman reaches 50 years old and above. The religious leaders confirmed that the verse in the Hadith (teachings of Prophet Mohammed PBUH) concerning circumcision is not clear and inconclusive and expressed their agreement in the eradication of this practice. The prevalence rate of this practice is indeed high in the rural areas, which is 86%. In conclusion, each stage has meanings and is symbolic among the respondents. The reasons of following this vary from cultural to religious basis though the common viewpoint is the prevention of committing immorality. FC is still rampantly performed in the different rural areas of Lanao del Sur, Philippines.