The International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA) Nigeria has said violence against women in Nigeria is on the rise.
The Chairperson of FIDA Nigeria, Mrs. Inime I. Aguma stated this in a statement issued in celebration of this year’s International Women’s Day.
“In Nigeria, there is still a lot to be done. Recent reports from our branches show that there is a steady rise in the violation of women’s rights across the country ranging from domestic violence, forceful ejection from home, maltreatment of widows, sexual harassment, coercive use of contraceptives, forced abortion, trafficking in women and forced prostitution.”
“Outstandingly, just under a month ago, 110 girls were kidnapped from Government Girls Science and Technical College, Dapchi, by suspected Boko Haram terrorists. It is shocking that this was still possible 4 years after the Chibok girls were abducted by the same Boko Haram terrorists in 2014.”
“FIDA recognizes the need for the adoption of Gender Based Violation Legislations in the North, such as the Violence Against Person’s (Prohibition) Act 2015, and we will step up our efforts to advocate for such, but then again it is one thing to have the law and another thing to enforce it.”
“There is a need for our security agencies to be reformed so that they are enable to perform their duties and create a safe and secure society for women, girls and children in the country, especially in the Northern rural communities where insurgency has been occurring.”
She stated that women and children face abuse and marginalization all over the world because of their gender and vulnerability but expressed satisfaction that women are now speaking up while noting that with the right laws and structure in place, women and children can be better empowered.
“Now more than ever before, more women feel empowered enough to speak out against these violations.”
“From politicians to actresses and gymnasts, women of different ages and backgrounds, all facing similar abuses, are speaking out loudly to ensure that these violations no longer go unaddressed.”
“ It is clear that with the right laws and structures in place, women and children can be better empowered and so we must continue to #PressForProgress.”
Explaining the significant of this year’s theme, Mrs. Aguma said “The UN theme for International Women’s Day, is “Time is Now: Rural and urban activists transforming women’s lives”. This theme recognises the need to acknowledge both the grassroots and global efforts made in furthering women’s rights across the world.”
The #PressForProgress campaign theme focuses on achieving the 2030 agenda of equality as well as building momentum for the effective implementation of the new Sustainable Development Goals, ‘no one left behind’.”
“FIDA Nigeria as an organization with mandate of enhancement, advancement, promotion, protection and preservation of the rights of women in Nigeria and so we seek to join this campaign as we call on all women across the world to remain relentless as they claim their rights and equality.”
We call on key stakeholders to re-strategize their plans and efforts to improve synergy as we work together to advocate and sensitize the public on the importance of achieving gender equality in the society.”
“FIDA Nigeria continues to demand for parity in the workplace and the public space in general. We make the call on the Nigerian government at national, state and local levels to provide for effective participation in the advancement of gender equality and nation building.”