SEXUAL, GENDER-BASED VIOLENCE: LASG CALLS FOR PROACTIVE SECURITY RESPONSE


… Honours Outstanding Officers of Domestic Violence Contact Centre

The Lagos State Ministry of Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation (WAPA) has charged the Nigeria Police and other security corps to continuously work towards curbing all forms of abuses, especially as relates to Sexual and Gender-Based Violence among women, girls and other members of the society

Speaking during a combined training session to commemorate the annual conference on Women’s Peace and security themed: “Actions for Peace: Our Ambition for Global Goal and Domestic Violence”,  held recently at LCCI, Centre, Ikeja, the Commissioner for WAPA, Mrs. Bolaji Dada stated that the training is necessary to intimate stakeholders on the need to synergize in curbing Sexual and Gender-Based Violence among women  in Lagos State.

Dada reiterated the periodic sensitisation and enlightenment campaign ongoing in the Ministry to raise the consciousness of women to immediately seek redress anytime violence or dehumanising treatment is meted out on them by their male counterparts.

She said, “As a Ministry, we had made concerted efforts to curb all forms of abuses among women by establishing a call toll-free line 767, also known as the Purple project, to enable victims of Sexual and Gender-Based Violence reach out to the Ministry immediately this act is perpetrated for quick responses. Referrals are made by the Ministry to other MDAs – the Ministry of Health, Justice – to ensure that victims get fair justice all the time”.

She noted that the International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers, themed “Action for Peace; Our Ambition for Global Goal”, is a clarion call for everyone to come together and actively work towards a more peaceful and equitable world, adding that all over the world there is an urgent call for peace and this can only be achieved by the collaborative efforts of Men, Women, Youth and everyone

The Commissioner admonished security agencies and paramilitary organisations such as the Nigeria Army, Navy, Air force, Police, Customs and Immigration among others at the session to share ideas with representatives from all the Local Governments and Local Council Development Areas on the need, and how to involve women and youths in the process of building and sustaining peace in the society.

Similarly, Mrs. Saheed Adebambo, Deputy Director, Social welfare and Head of Adoption, Ministry of Youth and Social Development called on all stakeholders to be proactive in responding to cases of gender violence, just as she charged stakeholders to collaborate in the fight to reduce abuses in the society.

While speaking on best practices in nabbing perpetrators of SGBV, Mrs. Olawumi Oluwatoyin Evans-Emmanuel, Assistant Commandant of Corps, National Security, Civil Defense Corps, said that Gender-Based Violence is a criminal act and prosecutors of such act should be punished not as civil offenders.

She intimated participants to cascade the information shared at the event to other officers, even as she requested that victims of Sexual and Gender-Based Violence should be encouraged to speak out to get their issues addressed immediately by the security officials in the State.

In his address, Mr. Idris Ibrahim, Head of WAPA Contact Centre, LASEMA, stated that Domestic Violence call centres are the first point of call for survivors and as such Head of Departments in the Ministry of Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation situated in 57 Local Governments and Local Council Development Areas should support the initiative to ensure that callers get the appropriate respond to their complaints.

The highlight of the event was the presentation by the Commissioner for WAPA, Hon. Cecilia Bolaji Dada to the outstanding officers from the Domestic Violence contact centre, namely Mr. Solomon Famolu, Family Social Services, Alimosho and Mrs. Olatoun Akingboye, Surulere as well as Mrs. Shukurat Arigbabu, Head of Department, Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, Oshodi/Isolo Local Government.