2018 population growth rate


Estimated prevalence among girls and women aged 15-49

Less than 1%

Source: UNICEF

Type practised

Varied. UNICEF notes that FGC is largely thought to exist only in migrant population within Zambia, so the practice is likely to vary depending on ethnic group/country of heritage.

There are also reports of girls from Zambian communities being encouraged by matriarch figures to stretch their own labia minora, in order increase male sexual pleasure. This falls under Type IV FGC.

Source: UNICEF & Martinez Perez et al


Varied. Labia elongation is encouraged around puberty. The age girls undergo FGC among migrant communities is likely to be varied, depending on traditions surrounding the practice within a specific ethnic group.


Varied. Girls may undergo FGC by a traditional practitioner or a medical practitioner. Zambian communities that support labia elongation encourage girls to carry this out themselves by pulling on the labia.

Legal status


National progress

  • 2005 – Zambia introduced a law against FGC.

Human Development Index ranking

144 in 2018 index, based on 2017 data.

Infant mortality rate

43.8 deaths per 1,000 live births (2016).

Maternal mortality rate

224 deaths per 100,000 live births (2015).

Source: Human Development Index