SGBV: Media/CSOs advocate for more designated courts

The media and Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) have made case for the establishment of more designated courts to try Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) cases in Adamawa State.

The resolution was contained in a position paper delivered by Neem foundation during a one day roundtable with key media partners to raise awareness about GBV concerns and responses in Yola on Thursday.

Some of the far reaching resolutions adopted include; “Advocacy for improved public funding for GBV at the State and Federal level and a specific budget to support sustained GBV in relevant Ministries Department and Agencies,

“Advocacy for the establishment of more designated courts for gender-based violence cases

“Advocacy for Establishment of more Sexual Assault and Referral Centers and One Stop Centers for timely and holistic GBV services.”

It noted that, “Sexual and Gender Based Violence is not only a consequence of gender inequality but also a constant reminder of women’s low status in society and the multiple disparities between genders. Research show that girls living in Nigeria could have experienced at least one form of sexual assault by the time they reach 25.

“Governments and development organisations have supported interventions to curb the menance, particularly with the passage of the Violence Against Persons Prohibition (VAPP) law in Adamawa, FCT and across the 33 States of Nigeria, supported designated courts to gender based violence, establishment of Sexual Assault and Referral Center, One Stop Centers, GBV Data Dash Board, sexual offenders and service provider registers among several other interventions.

“Despite these extensive commitments and intervention, SGBV persists. According to the National GBV dash board, 513 GBV incidents were reported in the Federal Capital Territory, within the period of January 2021 to June 2022. In Adamawa State from January 2021 to May 2022, 659 cases have been reported from the 21 LGAs in Adamawa State with Yola North, Numan, Yola South, Demsa and Gerri reporting the highest incidents.

“In light of this, Neem Foundation is working with the Ministry of Women Affairs to implement the Coordinated Response to Sexual and Gender Based Violence Project with financial and technical support from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) EU UN Spotlight Initiative Project.

“The project is focused on strengthening the capacity of service providers and making essential services available and accessible, acceptable, and of quality standards.

“Furthermore, providing technical support to the One-stop centers where survivors can access holistic services such as medical care, psychosocial support, legal assistance, safe space, and livelihood support.

“The center is crucial, especially at a time when there’s an increasing gap and demand for services for survivors of GBV. The intervention is also providing coordinated, multi-sectoral, and quality essential services for SGBV survivors in a coordinated manner.

“However, we still have a long way to go. We recognize that the issue of GBV is complex, and affects women, children, families, and Nigeria at large.

“Therefore, coordination and cooperation within all sections of our society have an important role to play in preventing GBV. No one is safe till we are all safe. Let us make it our responsibility to voice up GBV in the community.”


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