15 June 2020
The Federal, every states (in Nigeria) and particularly Cross River state governments have been called upon to declare state of emergency in respect of Sexual and Gender Based Violence in the country NEGROIDHAVEN can say authoritatively.
The trio of Neighborhood Care-Well Foundation, Child Care and Adolescent Protection Initiative and Gender and Development Action who made the call on the governments on Friday 12th June (Democracy Day) during a press conference observed that there has been an increase in cases of sexual and gender-based violence.
According to a press statement sighted by our correspondent, 'Women and girls need more than promises; they need an urgent declaration of a State of Emergency in every state in Nigeria, CRS inclusive. Without a strong state response, incidences of sexual and gender-based violence including rape and murder will continue to increase. By declaring a State of Emergency, you will show that you prioritise the rights and welfare of women and girls in your state.'
According to them 'In recent times, Cross River State and other parts of Nigeria have witnessed an upsurge in the cases of sexual and gender-based violence. This upsurge in cases of rape, battery and even child marriage is gradually widely gaining acceptance as a normal part of what it is to be a woman or a girl. Women and girls are vulnerable to physical, sexual, emotional and psychological abuses that cuts across lines of income, class and culture.
'In Nigeria, 1 in 4 girls will be sexually assaulted before the age of 18. Gender Based Violence is no longer a woman's issue but a national issue.'
It was disclosed that between 1973 and 2019, Nigeria had recorded only 65 rape convictions; that 55% of women who have experienced physical and sexual violence have never looked for help to stop the awful experience. National data suggests that percentage of women who have experienced GBV since 18 years of age rose from 11 percent in 2013 to 14 percent in 2018.
Victim blaming, dearth of access to adequate medical services and lack of access to justice mitigate against the crusades against the social malaise.