Circumcision Success Celebrated in Mpumalanga
African Eye News Service (Nelspruit)Muziwakhe Singwane
July 30, 2001.
Posted to the web July 30, 2001.
Witbank, South Africa
Circumcision deaths have cast a pall over the winter holidays, but in the former KwaNdebele area of Mpumalanga, the tradition remains a joyous celebration. Co-operation between traditional healers, doctors and parents has resulted in every circumcision operation in the region being a success.
About 400 initiates graduated in Vlaklaagte last weekend and were addressed by a proud King Mayitjha III of the Ndzundza people, at his royal kraal.
He said the boys' passage into manhood was a success because they had properly prepared for the occasion.
"Parents took their sons to a doctor for a check-up to ensure they were fit and healthy, to avoid death and complications," he explained.
He said doctors had been encouraged to perform the surgery at the initiation and schools and a clean razor blade was used on each boy. The boys spend two months at the initiation school.
The King said if all initiation schools were properly run, they would not get such bad publicity.
He said he planned to call for a meeting of traditional leaders nationwide to discuss the issue of circumcision schools and restoring their credibility.
The King told the graduates that they were now young men and had to conduct themselves with pride.
"You should no longer mingle with the youth, but help your families and contribute to society," he said. "You should also respect your parents. You should be an example to others."
They were told to be role models at school and to be serious about their studies. He warned them of the danger of HIV/Aids.
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