Vice President Yemi Osinbajo said the Buhari government is working together with state governments across the country and all other stakeholders to tackle the problem of rape and gender violence in Nigeria decisively.
According to the vice president, all forms of sexual aggression "are stains on the collective humanity and on the dignity of Nigerians as a people and nation".
He was quoted for saying this on Friday, in a statement signed by his special senior media and advertising assistant, Laolu Akande, after holding a virtual meeting with the National Human Rights Commission about recent cases of sexual and sexual violence. in Nigeria and the way forward
He also pledged to encourage state governments that are yet to domesticate the 2015 Violence Against People Act and the Child Rights Act 2003 to do so.
Read all the details of the statement below.
Together with state governments across the county and all other stakeholders, the Buhari government is working hard to tackle the problem of rape and gender violence in Nigeria decisively, because all forms of sexual assault “are stains on humanity and collective dignity. Nigerians as a people and nation. "
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, SAN, made this statement today at a virtual meeting organized by the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on the scourge of rape, sexual and gender violence in Nigeria.
"We will work with all actors to detect and punish the perpetrators of these unhealthy acts and we will work even harder to prevent their occurrence"
Specifically, the vice president also said that the fight against rape and gender-based violence would be taken to the states through the National Economic Council (NEC), which he chairs.
“We will continue to use the National Economic Council's platform to encourage states that will still domesticate the 2015 Violence Against People Act and the 2003 Children's Rights Act to do so.
"Gender-based violence, rape and sexual assault are a stain on our collective humanity and dignity as a people and nation," he added.
“Although violence against women has always been a challenge in Nigeria, the blockade of COVID-19 has led to a sharp increase in sexual and gender-based violence across the country.
“I was told that between March 23, 2020 and May 29, 2020, the FCT Sexual and Gender Violence Response Team received 105 overwhelming incidents; an average of 13 incidents per week, above the usual 5 to 6 incidents per week, before COVID-19.
“In addition, a few days ago, the Inspector General of Police reported that the police had recorded about 717 rape incidents across the country between January and May 2020.
“And that 799 suspects had been arrested so far, 631 cases investigated conclusively and charged before the court, while 52 cases are still under investigation.
"What these figures show is an escalation of an already shameful trend of violence against women and girls in the country," noted Professor Osinbajo.
He referred to the rapes and murders of Mrs Queen Igbinevbo, a pregnant woman at her home in Edo State, on May 20, 2020, and Vera Uwaila Omozuwa, a 22-year-old student at Benin University on May 27, 2020.
According to the vice president, there is also the case of Barakat Bello, an 18-year-old student at the Federal Faculty of Animal Health and Production in Ibadan, on June 1, 2020, among others, saying that these aggressions “should never have happened and must cannot continue. "
Professor Osinbajo said President Muhammadu Buhari and state governors recently pledged to take drastic action against gender-based violence.
“On June 11, State Governors, under the auspices of the Nigeria Governors Forum (NGF), agreed to declare a state of emergency for rape and gender-based violence against women and children, renewing their commitment to ensure that offenders face the fullness. weight of the law.
"Likewise, the president, in his June 12 speech to Nigerians, reiterated the government's determination to combat gender-based violence through the instrumentality of the law and awareness," he said.
According to him, it is necessary to go beyond legislation to solve the problem, but, first, to question deeply dysfunctional cultures, systemic failures in our institutions and the perverse social norms that allow sexual and gender violence.
Osinbajo also acknowledged that the Ministry of Women's Affairs, the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons, the International Community and several civil society organizations were also at the forefront of the search for transformative solutions and strategies to address the root causes of the causes of genre. violence.
Present at the virtual meeting were the Minister of Women's Affairs, Dame Paullen Tallen, the Executive Secretary of the NHRC, Tony Ojukwu, representatives of the United Nations and Civil Society Organizations.
Senior Special Assistant to the President of Media and Advertising,
Vice President's Office
June 19, 2020