Rabat – Moroccan cleric, Sheikh Abderahman Sekkach, has stirred up debate once again after claiming that women who have extramarital sex would inevitably have “uterus cancer.”
“Sex out of wedlock causes uterus cancers,” Essekach said Jan. 19 on the Moroccan private radio channel Chada FM.
The cleric argued that during her first sexual intercourse, the woman’s vagina inscribes the “code” of her husband’s sperm. Therefore, in case of extramarital relationships, this “code” would not be recognized, and the wife would inevitably contract a uterus cancer. To support his arguments, Sekkach declared that this “extraordinary discovery” was made by “Western scientists.”
According to Sekkach, “Western scientists” have shown that the “idda,” the “mourning” period that a Muslim woman must observe after the death of her spouse or after a divorce before contracting a new marriage, corresponds to the time required for the vagina to erase the “code” of the former husband.
“What Western scientists have just discovered, the prophet already knew about it 14 centuries ago. He knew that the uterus needed these 4 months and 10 days to change the sperm code. How did he [know], if it is not the divine miracle?” he said.
The cleric’s comments sparked arguments on social media. Moroccan sociologist and feminist activist Soumaya Naamane Guessous expressed her outrage in a long post published on her Facebook page in which she insisted on the “danger” of such remarks.
“These broadcasts are an insult to Moroccans intelligence and to their dignity. I am ashamed! They are dangerous because they dull listeners who number in the thousands and even millions,” she wrote.
“Is it normal in 21st-century Morocco … to allow this kind of idiocy? Is it acceptable for radio station managers to give the antenna to such ignorant [people] to inform and guide our people. Do these officials listen to these programs, as some of them are progressive?” Guesous continued.
In 2016, the Moroccan High Authority of Audiovisual Communication “severely punished” Chada FM officials after Sekkach claimed that women “have no right to leave their homes, nor the right to work,” and that women’s main place remains at home.
“When a woman enjoys food, clothes, a house and a husband, she must stay at home. Otherwise, she becomes a sinner before God. These sentences are not of my own invention, they are directly taken from the holy Qur’an,” Sekkach added.
Following these comments, the HACA issued a press release stating that Chada FM’s guest and broadcasters violated Articles 3 and 8 of Law 77.03 related to audiovisual communication, which state that Moroccan audiovisual communication is free, and the exercise of this freedom must be “applied with respect and human dignity … audiovisual communication operators must promote a culture of gender equality and combat all forms of discrimination, especially those that degrade the image of the woman.”