The National Council of Women Societies (NCWS) on Friday commiserated with the family of Nigeria’s first female combat helicopter pilot, Tolulope Arotile, who died at the age of 24.
Mrs Laraba Shoda, National President of NCWS, in in a statement in Abuja, described Arotile as a trailblazer and called on other young women not to be discourage by her sudden death.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Arotile died of head injuries sustained after a former school friend accidentally reversed into her while she was trying to greet her.
”Arotile died less than a year after she was decorated as the first female combatant helicopter pilot. We condoled with the family, friends, and her colleagues from the Nigerian Air Force where she had worked.
”We call on other young women that had the desire to become combatant helicopter pilots not to be discourage. I am sure that God in His wisdom knows best.
”May the Almighty God give her parents, loved ones and all Nigerian women the fortitude to bear this great loss. We will miss her greatly.
Edited By: Ismail Abdulaziz (NAN)
Members of the National Council of Women’s Societies (NCWS), on Tuesday, congratulated an elder statesman, Col. Emma Shoda (rtd.) on his 70th birthday.
The President of NCWS, Mrs Gloria Shoda, in a statement issued in Abuja, described him as a worthy elder statesman, with impeccable service to Nigeria.
According to her, Shoda has been an amazing husband, father and confidant.
”You are a friend and pillar of support through our journey together. I praise the Almighty for giving you to me as my life partner.
”On behalf of members of NCWS, I congratulate Col. Shoda (rtd) on his 70th birthday. You are a worthy elder statesman, with impeccable service to Nigeria and humanity,” she said.
Edited by ‘Wale Sadeeq
The National Council of Women Societies (NCWS), on Saturday commended the Nigerian Senate on the passage of the sexual harassment bill.
Mrs Laraba Shoda, National President of NCWS, gave the commendation in a statement in Abuja saying that the passage of the bill was a step in the right direction to curtail sexual harassment in Nigeria tertiary institutions.
The bill is titled: A Bill for an Act to make Provisions for Prohibition of Sexual Harassment of Students in Tertiary Educational Institutions and for Matters Concerned Therewith, 2019.
The bill was first originated in the eight’ assembly and was re-introduce by the Deputy Senate President, Ovie Omo-Agege, and 106 other senators.
It is to help check the incessant sexual harassment of female students from the hands of those engaged to tutor and mentor them.
The bill was passed on Tuesday after due consideration of the report of the Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters, which was in charge of reviewing the bill and organising a public hearing on the legislation.
According to Shoda, this piece of legislation passed will address an aspect of gender-based violence and we are particularly pleased that the nineth senate, under the leadership of its President, Dr Ahmed Lawan, has prioritised it on the legislative agenda.
“The bill passed will now stand as a preventive and protective mechanism for those trying to pursue their educational dreams.
‘’It puts an end to ‘Sex for Grade’ culture and exploitation of our female students once and for all,’’ she said.
Shoda said that the bill also addressed any act of sexual violence and harassment as well as offered a safe reporting mechanism that would protect the victims.
“This bill has been a long time coming and there was some opposition to it from the Academic Staff Union of Universities on the grounds that laws covering it already existed and the autonomy of universities would be under threat.
‘’Nonetheless, we are, however, pleased with the outcome of our well fought campaign.
“The council is appreciative of the fact that Lawan and his colleagues in the Senate were determined and resolute to push the bill to its conclusion.
The president noted that the bill has 25 clauses adding that it seeks to promote and protect ethical standards in tertiary institutions and stipulates a 14-year jail term for offenders.
‘’This bill will also mean that Nigeria will be fulfilling part if its obligations undertaken through the ratification of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women,” she stated.
“She added that it was fulfilling “The African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, the Protocol to the African Charter on the Right of Women in Africa and the Rights and Welfare of the Child among others’’.
Shoda praised the efforts of all the stakeholders who during the journey were steadfast and did not give up on the hope and campaigns to ensure that Nigeria’s educational institutions remained as epitomes of high ethical standards and sacrosanct learning environment.
Edited By: Donald Ugwu (NAN)
Gov. Abdullahi Sule of Nasarawa State has approved the establishment of mobile court to handle cases of rape and other forms of violence against women across the state.
He gave the approval during interactive session with women groups on Friday in Lafia.
He said that issues concerning women and youths remained topmost in his agenda.
He thanked President Muhammadu Buhari “for taking appropriate measures to ensure peace reigns in the North Central and the country at large.”
He urged women and youths to take advantage of the windows of opportunities coming into the state as investors set up businesses to improve their status.
The state’s Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development, Hajiya Halima Jabiru, who thanked the governor for approving the establishment of the mobile court, expressed concern over increasing rate of rape in the state and many parts of the country.
Jabiru said the court would help in bringing perpetrators to book.
She explained that the Ministry of Justice would help to produce a draft bill to be presented to the state House of Assembly.
The commissioner decried increased violation of women and girl’s rights, and urged the judiciary to ensure that perpetrators of such heinous crimes, face quick and stringent penalties to serve as deterrent to others.
She also called for the establishment of a scheme to address the issue of girl child education in the state, noting that with added support to women through the Ministry of Women Affairs, there would be improvement through multiplier effects on families and the entire society.
Mrs Aisha Isa Idoma, the Chairperson of the National Council for Women Societies (NCWS) in the state, commended the governor for completing projects initiated by his predecessors.
Idoma, who described the governor as a man of his words, commended him for carrying women along in his administration, especially with the appointment of Jabiru as Commissioner for Women Affairs.
She, however, said that the NCWS in the state, the umbrella body for all women organisations, is handicapped because it has no office to operate.
APC Woman Leader in the state, Mrs Elsie Monday, also thanked the governor for carrying women along in all political activities.
Edited By: Kamal Tayo Oropo/Hadiza Mohammed-Aliyu (NAN)
The Adamawa Council of the National Council for Women Societies (NCWS), has urged the State Government to strive hard towards empowering more women in the state to make them self-reliant.
NCWS first Vice President, Mrs Rebecca Kwabe, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on Tuesday in Yola.
Kwabe said that it was important to consider women by providing them with soft loan, entrepreneurship training and capacity building to improve the well-being of their children so they can be useful in the society.
“Government should be proactive in developing the capacity of women by empowering them to be self-reliant.
“Government policies should also favour them as they have the potentials and abilities to contribute to the development of the state and the country at large.
“This will help them to be self reliant and not to depend on their spouses for sustenance,” she said.
She called on women to take care of their children, especially the girl-child to safeguard them from rapists and other criminal elements in the society.
Edited By: Edwin Nwachukwu/Ali Baba-Inuwa (NAN)
The National Council of Women’s Societies (NCWS) on Friday urged women organisations to support the call for execution of rapists in the country.
Mrs Laraba Shoda, National President of NCWS said this in a statement issues in Abuja in commemoration of the International Day for the Elimination of sexual Violence in Conflict.
According to her, violence against women and girls is one of the most widespread, persistent and devastating human rights violations in our world today.
”It has remained largely unreported due to the impunity, silence, stigma and shame surrounding it.
”This is why the council as an umbrella body of women-based societies is urging all women groups to support the call for the execution of rapists either in conflict or in peace.
”Raping , whether at war or during conflict period and especially when there is peace, is not acceptable, hence the need for us to stand together against this demonic action.
”We commend the Ministry of Women Affairs for having the political will to pursue this project headstrong.
”I think that if a rapist remembers that he will be killed, it might stop him from his barbaric act”, she said.
Shoda said that all hands must be on deck to end this scourge that impacts one in three women worldwide irrespective of age.
”I commend the government at all levels standing with the women on this. Actions that will reduce rape drastically are being entrenched in our society.
”In spite of protests by various groups in recent times through movements of anti rape campaigns , sexual violence continues to increase and embedded in our social environments like a culture.
”As we mark the 2020 International Day for the Elimination of sexual Violence, I urge you to join the campaign, stand against rape and be a part of its elimination, call for their execution,” she said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN0 reports that the International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence is observed on June 19 as set aside by the United Nations for the awareness of the need to put an end to conflict-related sexual violence.
Edited By: Kayode Olaitan (NAN)
The National Council of Women Societies (NCWS) on Friday called on government at all levels and Nigerians to used the Democracy Day celebration to reflect on the current challenges facing the country.
Mrs Laraba Shoda, the National President of NCWS, who made the call in a statement in Abuja, said that government should focus on how to improve the economy after the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to her, the coronavirus pandemic has brought the world economy and indeed Nigeria to a stand still.
”What we should focus on now is how best to rebuild our battered economy and move it forward.
”We should refect on how we will come out of corruption that has eaten deep into the system. How do we address the insecurity that is fast becoming a norm?
”How do we manage the current increase in rape cases that has become a menace in our society? she asked.
The NCWS national president urged the government to strengthen and enforce the laws on rape to serve as deterrence to others.
Shoda while congratulating Nigerians called for prayers for Nigerian leaders, rebuilding of the economy and an end to COVID-19 pandemic.
Edited By: Felix Ajide (NAN)
The National Council of Women Societies (NCWS) has attributed the upsurge of rape cases in Nigeria to lack of proper prosecution of offenders.
The National President of NCWS, Mrs Laraba Shoda, said this in a statement on Thursday in Abuja.
Shoda said that the rising cases of rape was because of the inability of the security agencies to properly prosecute accused persons.
The NCWS president said that advocacy and proper prosecution would curb the incessant cases of rape.
According to her, most rape victims get victimised when they report the cases and that is why most of them refuse to talk.
She stated: ”The victimisation starts from the security officers themselves in trying to force the victims to prove if there was consent of penetration.
“In Nigeria, it is very difficult to prosecute and for the victim to get justice for a case of rape, instead what is common is ridicule.
“The past weeks have been filled with sad stories of young girls and women and even babies being assaulted and raped across Nigeria.
“These include Vera Omozuwa in Edo State, Barakat Bello in Oyo State, both of whom died from the assault.
“A pregnant women was also said to have been raped and murdered in Benin. In April, an 18-year-old lady known as Jennifer was allegedly attacked and raped by a gang of five men in Kaduna.”
Shoda noted that the incidents had become too much and the law must take its cause.
“The punishment for rape is said to be 21 years imprisonment and I doubt if anybody has been convicted for offences of rape and incest for that long in recent times.
”Honestly life imprisonment is not enough for the perpetrators of this heinous crime. Rape and violence against women has become a daily occurrence in the country,” she said.
Edited By: Ejike Obeta (NAN)
The Minister of State FCT, Dr Ramatu Aliyu, has called for stiffer penalties against rapists to check the increasing cases of rape and other forms of sexual violence.
Mr Austine Elemue, Special Assistant on Media to the minister, in a statement on Sunday, said Aliyu made the call while presenting palliative items to the FCT National Council of Women Societies (NCWS) and other unions.
The minister also suggested that rapists should be castrated to serve as a deterrent to others.
Aliyu revealed that the FCT administration was working closely with security agencies and the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Person (NAPTIP) to push for serious institutional framework that would ensure justice is served.
She said the FCT administration would engage members of various communities in the battle against rape, especially of minors.
Aliyu, who described defilement of minors as a heinous crime, said that death penalty was not the best of option for offenders.
According to her, when a society chooses to kill such offenders, they die, not remembering the crime they have committed against humanity.
“We will involve every member of the community in this battle against rape.
“Just recently, we began a search for one offender and definitely we will nip it in the bud.
“In conjunction with all the security outfits and NAPTIP, we are on the watch, and for any offender that we get, we will take it to any length to ensure that he is not fit to live.
“We are also pushing for serious institutional framework that will ensure that justice is done.
“It is not enough to just jail such person, definitely punishment like castration will do.
“When we kill them, they die and not remembering anything.
“Therefore, they should be castrated and roam the streets and remain inactive,’’ Aliyu said.
The minister used the occasion to appeal to the leadership of NCWS to ensure that the palliative items get to the vulnerable.
She expressed optimism that in no distance time Nigeria would be free from COVID-19 pandemic.
Responding, the President of FCT Council of NCWS, Mrs Hadiza Umar, thanked the FCT administration for the kind gesture.
Umar assured that the items would be distributed among widows in the society.
The National Council of Women Societies (NCWS) has called on Edo Government to ensure that killers of Vera Omozuwa, a 100-level Microbiology student of University of Benin (UNIBEN) are brought to book.
The President NCWS, Mrs Laraba Shoda, made the call in statement on Monday in Abuja.
The 22-years-old undergraduate was gang-raped and had her head smashed with a fire extinguisher by unidentified assailants inside a Pentecostal church in Ikpoba Hill in Benin, Edo, where she had gone to read.
The victim was attacked on May 13; she died on May 31 at the University of Benin Teaching Hospital.
Shoda, who condemned the action, said such act should not be condoned in the society.
According to her, the news of death of Omozuwa, a 100-level Microbiology student of UNIBEN is shocking and disheartening.
“This goes a long way to show how bad our society has become. People no longer have the fear of God to have raped a girl in a church and murder her.
“We are facing many social vices on top of the current COVID-19 pandemic which is already hard on everyone, compounding it with inflicting additional pain on any families and the society is simply wicked.
“I am calling on all well-meaning Nigerians to join hands in condemning this act, it can happen to anyone.
“It is high time that government at all levels strengthened our security operatives. Our core values of know your neighbours should also be activated to help curb some of these vices,” she said.
Shoda commiserated with the bereaved family on the loss of their daughter and prayed to God to grant her soul peaceful rest.
Edited By: Isaac Aregbesola (NAN)