*says victims in the range of one -17yrs
By; BAYO AKAMO, Ibadan
The Oyo State Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Inclusion’s Rapid Response Team on Sexual, Gender Based Violence and Child Abuse, on Thursday alerted that 17 Child abuse cases were reported in the state between March and June.
Chairman of the Rapid Response Team, Pastor Marcus Williams raisef the alarm while presenting his report on practical and technical activities of the team within the last three months of its inauguration, at the conference room of the Ministry in Ibadan.
Pastor Williams disclosed that it was unfortunate that victims of the child abuse cases comprising of three males and fourteen are in the range of one to seventeen years of age.
The Chairman Rapid Response Team stressed that part of the mandate of the team was to prevent and protect from violence and other ill – treatment not to women and children alone but also to men on equal basis through an holistic practice response which is multi sectoral and child centered, adding that the move has increased the number of children enjoying democratic dividend; access to free health care and education and have their rights upheld in Oyo state.
Speaking further, he identified some of the hindrances encountered by the team to include incomplete information of violence against survivors and most times, reports that were inaccurate as among those factors .
Pastor Williams gave other hinderances to include unavailability of sufficient responders, cultural values and family pressure of the survivors limited the extent of prosecuting the offenders as other hinderances facing the team
In her ramarks, Oyo state Commissioner for Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Inclusion, Alhaja Faosat Sanni commended the team for their swift responses amidst the fact that most of the cases reported happened during COVO-19 pandemic restrictions.
Represented by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Mrs Christiana Abioye, the Commissioner stressed that security agencies and Non-governmental organisations have been collaborating with the Ministry to see that cases of rape and gender based violence were dealt with accordingly.