Rape: Fe­male lawyers sue for VAPP Act do­mes­ti­ca­tion

Daily Trust - - ISLAMIC FORUM - By Cle­ment A. Oloyede

The In­ter­na­tional Fed­er­a­tion of Women Lawyers (FIDA) has called on gov­ern­ments and stake­hold­ers to push for the do­mes­ti­ca­tion of the Vi­o­lence Against Per­sons (Pro­hi­bi­tion) Act to curb the in­creas­ing cases of rape in the coun­try.

The Chair­per­son of FIDA’s Abuja branch, Ngozi Ikenga, speak­ing yes­ter­day at an event to com­mem­o­rate the In­ter­na­tional Day of Girl Child, said FIDA gath­ered the girl stu­dents from dif­fer­ent schools to sen­si­tize them on things they need to know about their se­cu­rity and how to be safe­guarded.

“For­tu­nately the VAPP Act that was passed by the Na­tional Assem­bly in 2015 has been very ef­fec­tive be­cause it ex­panded the pun­ish­ments and reme­dies for sus­pects and vic­tims of rape. The min­i­mum sen­tenc­ing for rape is now 12 years with­out an op­tion of fine un­der this Act, and the com­pen­sa­tion of the vic­tim is pro­vided for.

“We are still push­ing for its do­mes­ti­ca­tion in other states. The good news is that, last week, Anam­bra State do­mes­ti­cated it. So far, it’s only ef­fec­tive in the FCT, but Edo, Ek­iti, Bayelsa and oth­ers have been push­ing for its do­mes­ti­ca­tion. We are hop­ing that very soon all the states in Nige­ria will do­mes­ti­cate the act,” she said.

She added that al­though the ju­di­ciary has been sup­port­ive in the im­ple­men­ta­tion of the Act, FIDA will, next month, bring all stake­hold­ers in the ju­di­cial sys­tem to­gether to fur­ther sen­si­tize them on the Act.

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