The Federation of Female Lawyers (FIDA) has reiterated the call to institutions and communities to be proactive and develop policies that prevent and deal with every forms of abuse against women and girls.
The group said that Gender Based Violence (GBV) is still on the increase.
Country vice president/national president FIDA Nigeria Rhoda Prevail Tyoden, stated this yesterday in Abuja during a press briefing in commemoration of 16 days of activism on Ending all Gender-Based Violence Against Women and Girls with theme: “Orange the World: End Violence Against Women NOW!
Tyoden disclosed that there were more reported cases of GBV which shows that more people are getting aware of its implications.
she however, noted that all violence against women and girls is a clear violation of their fundamental human rights.
“It is a global health and developmental issue that cuts across economic wealth, culture, religion, age, and sexual orientation.
“It is one of the most extreme expressions of unequal gender relations in our society,
accordingly it remains a critical factor for the optimum contribution and development of women and girls in our society,” she said.
She further regretted that women and the girl child are subjected in many climes to live and survive in
domestic settings that threaten their very existence and proper development.
“The Covid-19 Pandemic showed more than ever that women are the most disadvantaged in the society, as the pandemic fueled an exponential increase in
VAWG through domestic and physical abuse, rape, psychological abuse, FGM, early marriage etc.
She quoted estimates published by the World Health Organization (WHO) which indicated that globally about 1 in 3 (30%) of women worldwide have been subjected to either physical and/or sexual intimate partner
violence or non-partner sexual violence in their lifetime, maintaining that these statistics are worrisome and cannot be ignored.
“We acknowledge that the theme is apt and appreciate the emphasis on ending the violence NOW, stressing the urgency required and emphasize that all persons
are born free, equal and must be respected and protected. As such women and indeed girls must be kept safe from all forms of violence,” she stressed.
She proffered new tools in the prevention and elimination of VAWG stressing the need for increased awareness and advocacy efforts; Sharing knowledge, intervention strategies and innovations which she said are also a must.
“Institutions and communities must therefore be proactive and develop policies that prevent and deal forthwith with abuse to act
as a deterrent. There is urgent need to address the gendered impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Women and Girls in West African Commonwealth countries.
“Legislators and the Executive
members of Governments should act fast in ending the violence against women and
girls in the region.
“This call remains a desideratum as the rate of violence still escalates, and is still at an all-time high due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on women and
girls which is fueled by patriarchy and misogyny. These must all be stopped now, she stressed.