Actionaid Nigeria and Global Hope for Women and Children Foundation (GLOHWOC), say 12 Community-Based Organisations (CBOs), in Kwara have been engaged for a five year-project on the protection of women rights and gender equality.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the project tagged “Women’s Voice and Leadership Nigeria (WVL) Project”, is funded by the Global Affairs Canada in partnership with Actionaid Nigeria.
Speaking at the stakeholders’ forum on Friday in Ilorin, Ms Niri Goyit, the Coordinator, North, WVL project at the Actionaid Nigeria, said that the project was conceived to provide funding and capacity building for the CBOs to reduce gender inequality.
Goyit, who said that the project was under the women rights unit of the Actionaid, pledged that the donors will provide the required resources to ensure the project achieve its objectives by 2024.
According to her, the NGO carried out a baseline survey of political and economic analysis which shows women to be more vulnerable to poverty and other societal challenges.
“This project is designed for five year in six states and the Federal Capital Territory in which Kwara is among.
“It began in 2019 and it’s put together to ensure the rights of women are protected and to reduce gender inequality,” she said.
The coordinator said the NGO identified lack of fund and technical as challenges of most of the community based organisations on women empowerment, hence the reason for the intervention.
She noted that the donors would hope to see improvement in women rights issues at the end of the project, particularly in the areas of political participation and gender based violence in the state.
Earlier in her remark, Ms Nkechi Ilochi-Omokedo, Women’s Rights Programme Manager, Actionaid Nigeria, said that the meeting was for all stakeholders to discuss how to advance gender issue.
On the engagement with stakeholders, she said, it will enable the state Ministry of Women Affairs to lead the process of advancing the course of women folks.
On the enrolment process of CBOs, Mrs Christy Abayomi-Oluwole, the Executive Director of GLOHWOC, the implementing partner of Actionaid in Kwara said that the 12 organisations were carefully selected among the 72 CBOs that applied for the project.
Abayomi-Oluwole, who commended the Actionaid Nigeria and the Global Affairs Canada for providing technical and financial supports for the project, expressed optimism that the project will achieve its desired results.
She commended participants on women rights in the state, particularly the Ministry for Women Affairs, Nigeria Police, Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA) and the National Orientation Agency (NOA) among others, for their supports and providing an enabling environment for the NGO to strive.
Other stakeholders in their remarks, pledged their unalloyed support and commitment to women rights issues in the state.
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma (NAN)
The Kwara Government has restated commitment to channel adequate resources toward ending all forms
of violence and negative treatment against women and children in the state.
Mrs Deborah Aremu, the state’s Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development, also pledged commitment to work toward curbing Harmful Traditional Practices (HTP) against women and girls during community stakeholders sensitisation at the palace of the Olomu of Omu-Aran, Oba Abdulraheem Adeoti in Omu-Aran, Kwara.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the stakeholders sensitisation on Wednesday was tagged: “Community Engagement on Sexual and Gender-Based Violence”,
spearheaded by the Rapid Response Team of the women affairs ministry.
The sensitisation was conducted in collaboration with Global Hope for Women and Children Foundation (GLOHWOC), Global Affairs Canada, ActionAid Nigeria,
as well as Women Voice and Leadership project Nigeria (WVL).
Other stakeholders at the meeting were officials of the National Orientation Agency, led by its state Director, Mr Oluesgun Adeyemi and members of two Community Based
Organisations (CBO) – Omu-Aran Women Forum and Golden Sisters Omu-Aran.
In her address of welcome, the women affairs commissioner said that “the state government, under the leadership of Gov. AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq is better focused and
determined to give women in the state a new lease of life devoid of violence and negative treatment.”
She said that the government, through the ministry, was collaborating with GLOHWOC and other stakeholders to explore various avenues to ensure that all forms of violence and abuses such as rape, battery and forceful marriage, became a thing of the past.
According to her, government alone cannot shoulder these enormous responsibility, hence the need for collaboration and sensitisation to actively involve community leaders and organisations
to achieve the desired result.
Aremu added that “at the inception of this administration, our governor ensured that nine members of his cabinet are women; this shows the high regard and importance the government attaches to women transformation.
“There are other ongoing measures, policy programmes, incentives and palliatives being put in place by the administration toward adding values and impacting on the living standard of the people of the state, especially vulnerable women.”
Mrs Afusat Ibrahim, the Permanent Secretary in the ministry, who corroborated Aremu’s remarks, said that the state government
had been working toward ending child trafficking, Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), street hawking and child exploitation.
She mentioned others as forceful marriage, low enrollment of the girl-child in school, wife battery, rape, too much domestic and family responsibilities on women,
as well as enforcement of the Violence Against persons (prohibition) Act (VAPP) and the Child Rights Law.
“We are advocating for stronger community policies at the grassroots; we want women to be allowd to own their own assets and resources,
parents to be sensitised on gender parity to allow for gender equality, among others.”
Mr Olusegun Adeyemi, the state’s Director, National Orientation Agency (NOA), stressed the need for collective support to achieve the desired freedom against unwarranted abuses against the womenfolk.
Oba Abduraheem Adeoti, the Olomu of Omu-Aran, urged government at all levels to ensure the provision of essential amenities for the citizenry, saying that “majority of victims of rape and other abuses are vulnerable members in the society.
“Government must see to the well-being of the generality of the citizenry, especially the less privileges and vulnerable.
“We thank God that we are bestowed with a working governor who is passionate about the socio-economic development of the state and the people.”
Mrs Christy Abayomi-Oluwole, the Chief Executive Officer of GLOHWOC said that the organisation viewed the incessant violence and abuses against women and children as unethical, ungodly which must be totally and collectively tackled and eradicated.
She said that the foundation had mapped out measures and strategies in collaboration with the rapid response team toward assisting victims of such violence and abuses.
She added that “we are working with the rapid response team through the Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development to reduce to barest minimum, the unwarranted abuses and negative treatment being meted out to our women and children.”
According to her, the rate of Gender Based Violence had been a source of concern, “especially those targeted at minors who are too tender to give any kind of self-protection against this menace.
“From the records, between 1989 and 2020, only 65 convictions were recorded from Gender Based Violence cases.
“This is not acceptable and must be addressed.”
Mrs Idayat Durodoye, a representative of the Omu-Aran Women Forum, said members of the forum had been trained and had received necessary financial and material
support from GLOHWOC to tackle the menace.
She listed the group’s area of jurisdiction to include the three wards in Omu-Aran namely; Aran, Ihaye and Ifaja wards in Irepodun Local Government Area of the state.
Edited By: Bayo Sekoni/Hadiza Mohammed-Aliyu (NAN)
The Women’s Voice Leadership (WVL), a Civil Society Organisation (CSO) in Bauchi State, has appealed to the media anc individuals to stop posting graphic images and videos of rape victims.
In a statement issued on Saturday in Bauchi by Mrs Comfort Attah, a representative of WVL, the group said reporting incidents of rape should be productive, nurturing, not a report of salacious details.
“Media reports that are thoughtful and that do not expose those who have had horrible experiences to further trauma.
“You must support survivors and honour their confidentiality by refusing to play into the media desire for details,” she urged.
Attah also urged the media to avoid the use of graphics or videos of rape victims because they are often subjected to scrutiny and in some cases to mistreatment.
“Images that try to recreate the scene, or show a distraught woman whose world has seemingly fallen apart or use of colours like red and black that suggest blood and something sinister, can hold up the process of recovery.
“Imagine what the rape survivor feels when she sees illustrations like these, you are recreating the horror,” she said.
According to her, CSOs including ASHHF, RAHAMA and FOMWAN have watched with concern the increased cases of rape and gender based violence towards women in the state.
She said that the WVL has recorded several cases of rape that were yet to be taken to court because there was no punishable law for perpetrators and stigma that was associated with it.
Attah said that the CSO had paid advocacy visits to the state commissioner of police, as well as traditional and religious leaders on the need to curb violence against girls, young persons and women.
Edited By: Bayo Sekoni/Muhammad Suleiman Tola (NAN)
The Police Commissioner in Bauchi State, Mr Lawan Jimeta, on Thursday advised parents against allowing their girl-child to hawk goods as it exposes them to rape and other forms of violence.
Jimeta gave the advice when a coalition of Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) under the auspices of Women’s Voice and Leadership (WVL), paid him a visit in Bauchi.
The commissioner, who noted that hawking was dangerous, wondered why parents should expose their girl-child to it.
“Parents and guardian should desist from sending girls out for hawking,’’ Jimeta said, noting that the incidence of rape continues because victims fail to speak out.
He urged NGOs and CSOs to engage in enlightenment and campaign to curb the menace of violence against girls and women in the state and society at large.
The commissioner gave assurance that his command would assign gender desk officers to attend to all sexual and gender based violence complaints by the WVL in the state.
He also pledged to conduct regular town hall meetings with stakeholders on gender based violence.
Earlier, the team leader, Mrs Comfort Attah of the Attah Sisters Helping Hand Foundation (ASHHF), solicited for the support of the commissioner to fight violence against women.
Also speaking, Hajiya Maryam Garba, a member of the team, explained that the women’s voice leadership project covered 11 local government areas of the state.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the implementing NGOs of the Women Voice of Leadership (WVL) project include ASHH Foundation, Rahama, FOMWAN and FAHIMTA with the support of Action Aid and funded by Global Affairs Canada.
Edited By: Johnson Eyiangho/Isaac Aregbesola (NAN)
A Non Governmental Organisation (NGO), Global Hope for Women and Children Foundation (GLOHWOC), has distributed palliatives to no fewer than 120 women in Kwara, in the bid to cushion the effect of the lockdown occasioned by COVID-19 pandemic.
Mrs Christy Abayomi-Oluwole, Chief Executive Officer, GLOHWOC, an NGO, said during the presentation of the palliatives at Omu-Aran that it was geared toward improving the living standard of the beneficiaries.
The GLOHWOC boss said the palliatives tagged: “GLOHWOC COVID-19 Relief Package”, which targeted the vulnerable, was also part of the organisation’s efforts toward curbing the community spread of the deadly virus.
Each of the beneficiaries were presented with some food items such as beans, semolina, groundnut oil as well as preventive materials such as bottles of hand sanitiser, liquid soaps, disinfectant, and customised face masks.
The intervention was supported by the Global Affairs Canada under the WVL Nigeria Project in partnership with ActionAid Nigeria.
The beneficiaries were also sensitised and treated to a demonstration on the basic rudiments and tips in maintaining personal hygiene through regular washing of hands in order to stay healthy.
Abayomi-Oluwole advised the beneficiaries to always imbibe personal hygiene through regular washing of hands in order to stay safe and healthy.
The GLOHWOC boss said that the part of the 120 beneficiaries were those earlier selected by the organisation for its larger empowerment project plan in Irepodun and Ilorin-South Local Government of the state in collaboration with ActionAid Canada and Global Affairs Africa.
She said the empowerment project tagged: “Gender Equality and Women Empowerment scheme,” had reached an advanced stage and was temporarily suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to her, the said empowerment project, which is coming soon and aims at providing moral and financial support to the beneficiaries in their businessess.
She explained that the 120 women were carefully selected by members of the project steering committees in the two targeted councils.
She added that some unregistered cooperative groups were also included for moral and financial assistance under NGO’s women empowerment initiative few months ago.
“Each of the selected beneficiaries had earlier opened individual accounts and grouped with the cooperatives as part of the empowerment process in collaboration with Global Affairs Canada and ActionAid Nigeria.
“The beneficiaries were scheduled to attend an entrepreneurship development and skills training in collaboration with Landmark University in April when the programme was halted due to the advent of COVID-19.
“So this distribution of palliatives to the selected beneficiaries is just our own little way of remembering them at this critical period of COVID-19 pandemic.
“The whole essence is to sensitise them on the need to maintain personal hygiene and at the same time to ameliorate, to some extent, whatever negative effect the lockdown had burdened on them,” she said.
Oba Abdulraheem Adeoti, the Olomu of Omu-Aran, in his remarks, described the gesture by GLOHWOC as unprecedented and a welcome development.
He called on other individuals and groups to emulate the exemplary and philanthropic leadership style of the organisation geared toward promoting equality and human capital development, especially among vulnerable women.
Chief Abiodun Owolabi, the Chairman of the Irepodun Local Government Steering Committee of the empowerment initiative, thanked the organisation for being at the fore front of women transformation and emancipation.
“The distribution of the palliative to this category of beneficiaries today is a testimony of GLOHWOC’s commitment and determination toward ensuring the desired recognition, equality and human capital development envisioned for the womenfolk,” Owolabi who is the Legan of Omu-Aran said.
Mrs Fatimoh Adam and Mrs Folakemi Oluwasesan, both beneficiaries, in their remarks, thanked GLOHWOC and other collaborating agencies for their magnanimity, generousity and dedication to promoting gender equality among women.
Edited By: Angela Okisor/ (NAN) Felix Ajide