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UN advocates tougher measures to end GBV

Minister of Women Affairs, Dame Pauline Tallen, Minister of Finance Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed and the UN Women Country Representative to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Ms. Comfort Lamptey unveiling the I Dey with Her campaign. Photo: Azizatu Sani/Radio Nigeria

Secretary General of the United Nations, Mr. Antonio Guterres, has called on Nigeria to establish High-quality Police and justice response systems to address increasing rates of Gender-Based Violence (GBV) by ensuring justice for survivals of violence.

He made the call in Abuja at Media briefing and Lighting event to commemorate the 16 days of activism to end violence against women and girls.

In his message, Secretary General of the United Nations, Mr. Antonio Guterres, represented by the UN Resident Coordinator in Nigeria, Mr. Edward Kallon said positive contact experience with the police was crucial to survivors of violence in their quest to seek justice and punishment for perpetrators.

According to him, there was the need for action plans to implement the declaration of a state of emergency by the states governors to address GBV and scale up campaigns that would change behaviours and attract men speaking out for violence against women. “As the UN we stand with survivors and support women’s representation in peace and security”, he said.

UN Women Country Representative to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Ms. Comfort Lamptey said there was the need to amplify ongoing efforts through intense advocacy and implementation of policies geared towards addressing violence against women and girls.

“We need funding here in Nigeria because we have seen in spite of the fact that we have policies in place, we have a VAPP Act in place, often times we have limited implementation because there is no funding that has been allocated to implementation of this importance policy document.” 

Minister of Women Affairs, Dame Pauline Tallen explained that Gender Based Violence had devastating consequence on all aspects of society and failure to invest in tackling it would result to persistent underdevelopment, noting that “there is also a growing evidence base to demonstrate that preventing violence can promote economic growth, human dignity and a just and egalitarian society”.

On her part, the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed pointed out that it was critical to scale up existing and develop new interventions to bridge gender and public finance management.

Highlights of the event was the launch of the Spotlight campaign tagged “#I dey with her” to broaden the advocacy against Gender-Based Violence on social media and the lightening of the headquarters of the Ministry of Women Affairs in Orange to symbolise the 16 days of activism to end violence against women and girls.

The occasion was also to kick start events lined up to mark the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women celebrated on 25th of November annually with the theme “Orange the World: Fund, Respond, Prevent, Collect”.

Azizatu Sani

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