Min­is­ter makes case for vi­o­lence against per­sons pro­hi­bi­tion act

Sunday Trust - - NEWS - By Adie Vanessa Of­fiong

The Min­is­ter of Women Af­fairs and So­cial De­vel­op­ment, Se­na­tor Aisha Al­has­san has said that the do­mes­ti­ca­tion of the Vi­o­lence Against Per­sons Pro­hi­bi­tion (VAPP) Act 2015 in the 36 states of the fed­er­a­tion is not only a mat­ter of urgent pri­or­ity, but a crit­i­cal step in pro­vid­ing the much needed en­force­ment frame­work along­side other nec­es­sary le­gal in­stru­ments to pro­tect women and girls from all forms of vi­o­lence both at the state and lo­cal lev­els.

She said the Vi­o­lence Against Per­sons Pro­hi­bi­tion (VAPP) Act - a com­pre­hen­sive le­gal in­stru­ment to holis­ti­cally ad­dress dif­fer­ent forms of Gen­der Based Vi­o­lence was en­acted in 2015 while the NAPTIP Act as well as other poli­cies all guar­an­tee pro­tec­tion for vic­tims.

The Min­is­ter who spoke at one of the side events or­ga­nized by Nige­ria at the 62nd Ses­sion of the Com­mis­sion on the Sta­tus of Women which held in New York re­cently, said, “The Min­istry in col­lab­o­ra­tion with the UNFPA in­au­gu­rated in 2017- a Task Force for the do­mes­ti­ca­tion of VAPP Act in Osun and Ek­iti states where FGM is very preva­lent, as first step of im­ple­ment­ing the VAPP Act.

In a pre­sen­ta­tion en­ti­tled, ‘Strate­gies for erad­i­cat­ing Gen­der Based Vi­o­lence in Nige­ria: Suc­cesses, chal­lenges and emerg­ing is­sues,’ Al­has­san said the topic was care­fully cho­sen to un­der­score the ever in­creas­ing cases of gen­der based vi­o­lence in the coun­try.

She said, “Nige­ria has con­sis­tently de­cried GBV in any form and has joined other coun­tries of the world to for­mu­late and sign rel­e­vant in­ter­na­tional pro­to­cols to erad­i­cate the scourge.

“Nige­ria’s sign­ing of the Con­ven­tion on the Erad­i­ca­tion of All Forms of Dis­crim­i­na­tions Against Women CEDAW and the at­tempt made to do­mes­ti­cate it through the Gen­der and Equal Op­por­tu­nity Bill is a com­mit­ment to the im­ple­men­ta­tion of rel­e­vant pro­vi­sions of CEDAW and a de­mon­stra­tion of the col­lec­tive re­solve to elim­i­nate or erad­i­cate gen­der based vi­o­lence in all ram­i­fi­ca­tions.”

The Min­is­ter who at­trib­uted the sit­u­a­tion to in­equal­ity in norms and power re­la­tions, also said, “the de­vel­op­ment has im­pacted neg­a­tively on the pro­duc­tiv­ity and liveli­hood of women and girls, es­pe­cially those liv­ing in ru­ral ar­eas.”

She added that she adopted the side event which had rel­e­vant stake­hold­ers in at­ten­dance as a plat­form to high­light var­i­ous forms of gen­der based vi­o­lence that were preva­lent in Nige­ria, as well as look into emerg­ing is­sues with a view to find­ing per­ma­nent so­lu­tion to gen­der based vi­o­lence in Nige­ria.

Al­has­san who listed child mar­riage, traf­fick­ing in per­sons, fe­male gen­i­tal mu­ti­la­tion as well as wife bat­ter­ing as some of the com­ment forms of gen­der based vi­o­lence, also said poli­cies and mech­a­nisms in place to fight the scourge in­clude ad­vo­cacy to­wards in­creased aware­ness on the var­i­ous forms of sex­ual vi­o­lence, and the need to re­port any such case as the first step to­wards its erad­i­ca­tion.

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