By; BAYO AKAMO, Ibadan
Stakeholders on Gender Based Violence (GBV) at the weekend asked the media to set agenda on sensitization at all level on Gender Based Violence to ensure that Nigerians, particularly the residents of Oyo State are aware of GBV.
The stakeholders made the call in a communique issued at the end of a 2-day workshop on Getting Based Violence Reporting, organised by the Nigeria Association of Women Journalists, (NAWOJ), Oyo State Chapter in collaboration with the Oyo state Government, held on the 27 & 28th February, 2019 at Grand Serene Hotel Iyaganku Ibadan.
According to the stakeholders in the communique, there is also the need for the media to also seek to educate the people on the legal provisions, especially the penalty and sanctions awaiting perpetrators or GBV.
The stakeholders maintained at the two days seminar which was solely sponsored by Living Word Mission, a Non Governmental Organisation (NGO) focused on advocacy and protection of women and children that there should be an end to discrimination against victims or survivors of Gender Based Violence through inappropriate use of words and languages in media reports
“Issues of GBV must be duly investigated before reporting and follow up on the prosecution process of perpetrators. The appropriate judicial processes must be allowed to take it cause by relevant stakeholders” it said
Part of the communique reads “That the media have a major role to play in the reduction of GBV in the state, through various programs and news reportage.
That NDLEA must swing into action on the issue of illicit use of drugs in the society especially those selling them as this has been identified to be contributory to the menace of GBV in all it forms.That the state government must fund the family court to ensure that judicial activities commences immediately, as same has proved to be another factor that can help to reduce the GBV menace in the society.”
The communique added. “That the implementation of the Child’s Right Laws and Violence Against Women Laws as passed in the state should begin immediately.
That there is an urgent need for either government or civil society groups to create a Task Force Committee that will evacuate children (male and female) from the street, as a means of reducing if not totally eradicate the nuisance caused by street children and destitutes on our roads.
That stakeholders should begin advocacy visit to various religious and traditional leaders to sensitise them on the ways they could help fight the scourge of GBV.
That cases of GBV must be reported to the appropriate quarters, most importantly agencies of government at the state and federal level such as Ministry of Women Affairs and the Nigeria Police Force among others.”
“That parents must specifically inform their children about who their relatives are rather that giving them misleading information about non family members. That, the media reports of GBV, if not properly presented may expose the victim to discrimination, while also providing a way of ‘escape’ for the victim(s).”
The training workshop was attended by security agencies including Nigerian Police Force (NPF), Nigerian Immigration Services (NIS), Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Oyo State Primary Healthcare Board, Child Protection Network (CPN), Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA), APIN Health Initiative, Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ), National Association of Women Journalists (NAWOJ), Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), Medical Women Association of Nigeria (MWAN), Justice, Development and Peace Commission (JDPC), Professional and practicing Journalists (print, electronic and online) among others.
Aside from providing teaching and learning platform for journalists, the training also afforded participants the opportunities to cross fertilise ideas on the way forward for victims of GBV and how to ensure wider and better sensitisation on the legal provisions through media reportage.