Monday 11 December 2017

Press Release GBV: Leave No One Behind: End Violence against Women and Girls

Every year, the world commemorates the global campaign to end gender based violence across the globe during the 16 days of Activism. This global action against gender based violence uses the 16 days starting from November 25th (International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and Girls) to December 10th (International Human Rights Day) to highlight the plight of women and girls facing various forms of gender based violence (GBV) within a broad framework of human rights violations and the need for all actors to scale up efforts to end all forms of human rights abuses.
The 2017 theme: Leave No One Behind: End Violence against Women and Girls is a reminder on the need to include those often neglected in our collective efforts to end GBV. Conflicts, security challenges and subsequent displacements have all brought new forms of violence against women and girls; with the peculiarity of their situation serving as potential grounds for neglect while focusing on meeting their urgent and basic humanitarian needs for food, clean water and shelter. Most often, some of these abuses emanate from trusted partners, security and justice officials who take advantage of the vulnerability of those in their protection.
In Nigeria, the need to broaden the scope and the debate on addressing gender based violence from a focus on women and girls to include men and boys finds evidence in recent rising waves of domestic violence targeted at men. The society’s expectations and gender constructions of masculinity makes the discourse more complicated as men and boys are expected to be strong even in the face of abuse. While GBV targeted at women and girls still has a premium place in view of the scale of abuse, it is imperative to put a spotlight on new issues and trends on gender based violence in our quest to collectively find ways of ending the menace.
We therefore call on justice and security institutions to provide more protection and institute preventive laws to protect persons vulnerable to violence while guaranteeing friendly and accessible means of documenting reports from survivors. We call on all State Governors to domesticate and operationalize the 2015 Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act (VAPP) and the National Assembly of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to urgently pass the proposed Gender And Equal Opportunities Bill which seeks to provide a legislation seeking to eliminate all forms of discrimination on the basis of sex and gender in public and private spaces. 
The 2017 theme calls on us all to leave No One Behind and end gender based violence against all persons.

CLEEN Foundation


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