The United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres, on Tuesday stressed the need for high-quality police and justice response to end Gender-Based Violence in Nigeria.
Guterres, represented by the UN Resident Coordinator in Nigeria, Mr. Edward Kallon, said this at a media briefing to commemorate the 16 days of activism to end violence against women and girls in Abuja.
According to him, the government needed to take more action by increasing more funding, prevention mechanism, response, as well as collect data on GBV to eliminate the menace in the society.
“We call on the need for high-quality police and justice response. We know that a positive initial contact experience with police is crucial for survivors of violence.
“As the UN, we stand with survivors and support women’s representation in peace and security, by building the justice sector response, particularly that of law enforcement, that receives cases involving violence against women and girls,’’ he said.
Guterres said the increasing violence against women, recorded during the COVID-19 lockdown, compelled the UN system to develop a global engagement strategy to scale up its efforts in eliminating the menace.
He, therefore, stressed the need for more advocacy, strengthening of women CSOs and engaging influencers at all levels and mobilise the social and cultural shift necessary to end GBV in the society.
Also, EU Ambassador, Ketil Karlsen, represented by Mr Paulo Simoes, Political Officer, politics, Press and Information said Nigeria was leading in the fight to eliminate violence against women and children.
Karlsen called on the government to intensify its efforts and invest more in the lives of women and girls as one of the strategies to end all forms of GBV.
Similarly, the UN Women Country Representative to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Ms Comfort Lamptey, said the inadequate funding had limited implementation of efforts to address GBV.
Lamptey called for effective coordination of the multiple sources of data information on GBV, as well as engaging the youths to ensure a society free from GBV.
She stressed the need for protection, comprehensive treatment and care for survivors of violence, as well as the prosecution of perpetrators to end GBV.
Minister of Women Affairs, Mrs Pauline Tallen said the 2020 theme for the campaign, “Orange the World: Fund, Respond, Prevent, Collect’’ would help amplify the voices of women and girls.
Tallen said the recent launch of the National Data Situation Room to record incidences of Violence Against Women and Girls would reduce ensure offenders were prosecuted.
Tallen said the situation room would allow decision-makers and programme managers to analyse, view and respond to widespread incidences of violence against women and girls.
Sadiya Umar-Farouq, Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, represented by the Head, Special Duties, Nadia Mohammed, reiterated the commitment of the ministry to end the menace.
Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, said it was critical to scale up existing and develop new programmes to empower women and girls.
Mrs. Ene Edeh, a gender advisor also stated that it was necessary to put strategies in place to ensure that offenders do not repeat their offences, even after facing the wrath of the land.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the Minister of Women Affairs, supported by the Spotlight Initiative also launched the “#I Dey with Her’’ campaign as part of the 16 days of activism to end violence against women and girls.
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